Jacob Van Ginkel and Marcus Atkinson to Join Northwestern Football

Northwesstern logoJacob Van Ginkel of Rock Valley and Marcus Atkinson from Primghar have signed letters of intent to continue their football careers at Northwestern College next fall.

Van Ginkel is a 6’1”, 180-pound linebacker who played three years for the Western Christian High School football team. Van Ginkel ranked second on the team with 95 total tackles, four for a loss, and registered two sacks and one fumble recovery. He helped lead the Wolfpack to a 5-5 record and a state playoff berth. Van Ginkel plans to major in business management/marketing at Northwestern and is the son of Paul and Andrea.

“It is exciting to add Jacob to our defense, joining his brother, Sam, on that side of the ball,” commented head coach Kyle Achterhoff. “Jacob is a physical linebacker with outstanding speed who we are excited to have with us for the next four years.”


Atkinson is a 5’8”, 150-pound multi-purpose player who played three years at several different positions for the South O’Brien High School football team. A first team all-conference selection, Atkinson rushed for 220 yards on 46 carries and also caught five passes for 28 yards. A special teams threat, he averaged over 20 yards on eight punt returns and totaled 212 kick return yards. On defense, Atkinson totaled 40 tackles, three interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

Atkinson also holds three weightlifting records in the state of Iowa and one in Nebraska while also lettering three times in track and field. An honor roll student, Atkinson plans to major in physical education at Northwestern. He is the son of Randy Atkinson and Kerria Frank.

“We are excited to have Marcus come to Northwestern College,” commented Achterhoff. “He is very strong for his size and has played a number of different positions for a very good high school football team. Those experiences will be an asset for Marcus coming into our program.”

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