There are not many Northwestern pros in sports. Among the NFL players the longest tenured was defensive tackle Luis Castillo.
His tenure in the NFL may not be in precarious position, but for the first time in his career, he will be looking for a new team. The Chargers cut their first round pick from 2005 on Thursday a year after he signed a one-year, $1 million deal for a season he missed after breaking his leg in the first week of the season. Castillo was rehabbing well from the last reports, but I guess it was not fast enough.
Castillo has racked up 153 tackles in seven seasons with the Chargers.
The release has at least one Charger writer a bit confused. Castillo was signed last offseason after he was originally released last season. Why he was released this time is still a mystery.
Hopefully Luis Castillo can get healthy and find a home in the NFL again. We loved having a Pro Bowl-caliber defensive end to be proud of every Sunday. It is nice to have that little shade of purple every weekend — among all the current Northwestern players in the NFL.
So far this has been a summer of Northwestern players in the pros.
Unfortunately, we do not have great news from Las Vegas and the Summer League. John Shurna came off the bench for the second time this Summer League and scored five points on 2-for-4 shooting in Atlanta’s loss to Portland on Thursday. He added two rebounds and three assists. Shurna also scored three points in nearly nine minutes in Atlanta’s win Wednesday.
Michael Thompson also got some increased playing time with Austin Rivers sitting with an ankle injury. He scored four points in just more than seven minutes for the Hornets on Wednesday. Thompson has not received a ton of playing time for the Hornets and Shurna’s struggles earlier in the week seem to point to the fact that this is not the year a Northwestern player cracks the NBA. Hopefully Shurna catches on somewhere and Juice gets offered another year with Fraport Skyliners.
In happier pro news (who knew I could be such a downer on a Friday?), Luke Donald finished his first round at -1 and is six shots back of Adam Scott in the first round of The Open Championship and Royal Lytham & St. Anne’s. Donald has struggled in the two majors this year despite his top overall ranking in the World Golf Rankings. Donald tees off his second round at 3:42 a.m. CT (why aren’t you watching on ESPN right now!).
Hopefully Donald will be drinking from the Claret Jug this weekend!