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Crootin’: Iowa Football Commitment Season Update

Surprise! Iowa’s recruiting class is moving in the wrong direction.

Peyton Mansell is standing tall as one of the few offensive skill players left committed to Iowa.
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You know what? Screw it. I’ve had this thing written and re-written three times now. Every time I’m ready to put it out to you fine people, another one of the members of this recruiting class announces they are taking their talents elsewhere (though none to South Beach, yet). All because of some antiquated policy the Iowa Football staff refuses to bring into this century. So I’m done. I’m not wasting any more time putting together some fancy write up about the class and their performances. Not worth it.

When I started writing this, Iowa’s recruiting class was ranked in the top-25 nationally. It boasted a 5-star, a few 4-stars and a slew of kids from the state of Texas at positions of need. As it stands today, Iowa’s class is ranked behind teams like Iowa State and Rutgers. @#$&ing Rutgers!

You know the details by now, so as I said before, not wasting my time. Lists are easier to read anyway. Here is a list of Iowa skill position recruits a little over a month ago.

4-star RB Eno Benjamin

4-star CB Chevin Calloway

3-star QB Peyton Mansell

3-star WR Gavin Holmes

3-star WR Brandon Smith

3-star WR Beau Corrales

3-star RB Ivory Kelly-Martin

3-star CB Matt Hankins

3-star CB Josh Turner

3-star DB Camron Harrell

3-star DB Djimon Colbert

Not listed is the crown jewel, 5-star DE AJ Epenesa, who is a near lock to stay committed as he is a legacy recruit. The rest of that list? I have questions about Mansell, Smith, Hankins and Turner. All but Smith are pretty close with Eno, Beau and Gavin, who have already de-committed. Smith had plans to make other visits before cancelling once Eno lost his scholarship. Now that other players are backing out of their commitments due to the policy, I think it’s possible Smith does the same.

For the ones that are left on board, for now, here is a look at the seasons they’ve had. No more commentary, they will probably be gone by the time this gets posted.

Peyton Mansell, QB - Belton, Texas

Mansell’s Belton Tigers’ season finally came to an end last week on one of his worst statistical performances of the year. Mansell finished with 188 passing yards on 18-33 passing with 1 TD and 1 INT. He added 69 yards on the ground on 24 carries in a 24-7 loss.

On the season, Mansell finished with 2,558 yyards on 189-272 passing (69.5%) with 33 TDs and 7 INTs. He also had 1,132 rushing yards on 166 carries (6.8 yards per carry) and 15 TDs.

Here’s a look at his season highlights.

Ivory Kelly-Martin, RB - Osewgo, Illinois

Kelly-Martin is a 5’11” 195 lb 3-star prospect that has a nice balance of power and agility. His Oswego East squad was bounced from the playoffs a couple weeks ago. He finished the season with 159 carries for 1360 yards and 22 TDs. He also had 19 catches for 287 yards and 4 TDs

Brandon Smith, WR - Lake Cormorant, Mississsippi

Brandon Smith is the lone receiver left in the class. Luckily Iowa has a plethora of talent at the position already on campus.... said no one ever. Smith is a physical specimen at 6’3” 198 lbs. On the season he has 73 catches for 1469 yards and 19 TDs.

And that’s it. That’s the whole damned list of offensive skill guys left in the class of 2017. I mean, I guess you could throw in Jacob Coons from Solon. He’s a 6’4” 225 lb TE/DL that finished his year with 29 catches for 479 yards and 5 TDs. We’ll see if he ends up as a TE or elsewhere at Iowa.

FWIW, DE AJ Epenesa finished with 36 tackles, 11 for loss, and 2 sacks on the season. CB Josh Turner ended his season with 42 tackles and 16 pass breakups. Matt Hankins had 34 tackles and 13 pass breakups.

As for the guys that de-committed? Ugh.

Beau Corrales, WR - Georgetown, Texas

Corrales ended the year with 80 catches for 1,050 yards and 14 TDs.

Gavin Holmes, WR - Justin, Texas

Holmes finished his season with 80 catches for 1,549 yards and 17 TDs. He notched 1,926 all purpose yards and a pair of kickoff returns for TDs.

Eno Benjamin, RB - Wylie, Texas

Eno Benjamin is still going strong. He has 2,429 rushing yards on 329 carries (7 yards per carry) with 30 TDs, as well as 464 passing yards on 31-58 passing and 6 more TDs (3 INTs) and 44 receiving yards on 2 catches with a TD. Here’s a look at half of his senior year highlights. Sigh.

Why, oh why couldn’t the staff just make nice with these guys?