clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

2016 IOWA FOOTBALL RECRUITING: OFFENSIVE LINE, TIGHT END

New, 15 comments

In-depth look at Iowa's surprisingly light offensive line class and extremely athletic tight end class.

Alaric Jackson

Tackle, 6'7, 285
Detroit, MI (Renaissance)
3 Rivals, 3 Scout, 3 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, Alaric JacksonAlaric Jackson Recruiting Capsule

Arguably the most coveted offensive lineman in the class, if not the highest recruited, Jackson waited until National Signing Day to announce his commitment to Iowa. He played the hat game and Iowa actually won! A three-year varsity basketball player at Renaissance High School, Jackson didn't pick up football until his junior year and started getting scholarship offers soon after. Jackson has the size, first step and control to potentially start as a freshman in the FBS.

2016 Outlook: With the 2016 spring depth chart listing upperclassmen across the tackle and guard positions, it's unlikely that Jackson will see any playing time barring injury. Considering he's only played football for two years, Ferentz will likely want him to hone his technique and put on some weight so a redshirt is likely.

FUN FACT: Could dunk on Jarrod Uthoff.

Cole Banwart

Guard, 6'4, 275
Algona, IA (Algona)
2 Rivals, 2 Scout, 3 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, Cole BanwartCole Banwart Recruiting Profile

Your prototypical Ferentz "under the radar kid from small town Iowa" recruit, Banwart wasn't initially rated by the recruiting services until he committed to Iowa. A lifelong Hawkeye fan, he spent the majority of his high school career on the defensive side of the ball at Algona High School. With his size, it's likely that he'll play at guard at Iowa but will need a good amount of time to learn his position. As in you probably won't see Cole Banwart until 2019 or beyond.

2016 Outlook: Redshirt.

FUN FACT: We're still trying to convince Adam that his name doesn't have the word "wart" in it so he'll stop making foot cream puns.

Spencer Williams

Guard, 6'3, 285
Cedar Falls, IA (Cedar Falls)
3 Rivals, 3 Scout, 3 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, Spencer WilliamsSpencer Williams Recruiting Capsule

With offers from Harvard, Yale and Cornell, Williams is the brainiac of the 2016 class. Generic descriptors of him include high motor and grit guy. A bulkier player with "short arms," Williams is listed as a guard but there's been chatter of him ultimately settling in at center. Considering that spot is currently occupied by sophomore James Daniels, it's going to be a while before Williams sees the field if that's where he ends up.

2016 Outlook: Redshirt.

FUN FACT: Is probably not related to Tennessee Williams. We think.

Shaun Beyer

Tight End, 6'5, 210
Cedar Rapids, IA (Kennedy)
3 Rivals, 3 Scout, 3 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, Shaun BeyerShaun Beyer Recruiting Capsule

Iowa's first victory over North Dakota State came when they flipped Beyer's commitment back in November. A multi-position player at Cedar Rapids Kennedy, Beyer amassed over 1500 yards and 16 touchdowns by playing quarterback, tight end, and tailback. He also punted, so that made Ferentz happy. While athletic, Beyer will probably need time to perfect his blocking because if you can't block well at Iowa, you can't play tight end. Expect to see Mr. Beyer in a couple of years.

2016 Outlook: Considering tight end is a question mark past Kittle, Beyer could potentially see minimal playing time. If not on offense, he could see time on special teams.

FUN FACT: Loves ice cream. Wait, that's Breyers? Never mind.

Noah Fant

Tight End, 6'5, 210
Omaha, NE (Omaha South)
3 Rivals, 3 Scout, 3 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, Noah FantNoah Fant Recruiting Capsule

Fant is unquestionably the gem of the tight end class and the recruit that I'm personally the most excited about. Rated the second best player out of Nebraska, Fant chose Iowa over Nebraska, UCLA, ASU and Cal. If you couldn't tell by his size, he's a pass catching tight end that has speed, size, and explosiveness to make an immediate impact on Iowa's passing game. Of course, the problem is that he isn't a wide receiver and like Beyer, his size makes him a question mark as a blocker. He'll need to spend some time with Doyle and by the time Kittle graduates, you could be looking at Iowa's starting tight end.

2016 Outlook: Being such a dynamic player, you could possibly see Fant lining up with Kittle in a four or five wide set next season as the Hawkeyes aren't extremely deep at wide receiver. He should get playing time on offense or special teams.

FUN FACT: Is a solid confirmation that Iowa > Nebraska.

T.J. Hockenson

Tight End, 6'5, 230
Chariton, IA (Chariton)
3 Rivals, 3 Scout, 2 ESPN, 3 247Sports
You Might Remember Him From Such Posts As: Have a Seat, T.J. HockensonT.J. Hockenson Recruiting Capsule

Apparently all of Iowa's tight ends are 6'5. Hockenson set Iowa high school records in career receptions and career touchdowns in 3A ball at Chariton High School. He's credited with having good athleticism, technique, and hands. After all, you don't catch 49 touchdowns in your career if you don't have good hands. His old video doesn't highlight his blocking so like everyone else in this class, there are likely questions as a blocker. Iowa definitely loaded up on the athletic tight end this season and whoever makes the best progress as a blocker will see the most playing time.

2016 Outlook: Just like everyone else, could see minimal playing time on offense or special teams.

FUN FACT: Fun Fact: Was given a recruiting ranking of 69 by ESPN. Nice.