It was a big weekend for the Iowa Football. They hosted some big name recruits for unofficial visits beginning last Thursday, capped that off with an alumni networking event for former players on Thursday night and then went right into their first recruiting tailgater of the summer on Friday and Saturday. Oh, and then they held a camp on Sunday. Like I said, big weekend.
And for good reason. We are entering a recruiting dead period where college coaches won’t be allowed to contact recruits between June 26-July 9. So this is a chance for Iowa to leave a lasting impression on some top targets without the opportunity for other coaches to get in their ear for a few weeks.
So, let’s get a little creepy and dive in to who was in town and what we should be on the lookout for following the big weekend.
Things kicked off on Thursday with a big time visitor in the class of 2018 in Dowling High School’s 4-star defensive end John Waggoner. Waggoner is a big, fast DE who excels at getting to the QB. His size and speed combo allows him to rush off the edge, but also bull-rush high school blockers.
He’s 6’5” and 245 lbs heading into his senior year and certainly has the frame to build into a prototypical defensive end. That would be why he has offers from most of the country, including Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Oklahoma and LSU.
He’s the number one recruit in the state of Iowa and the number nine defensive end in the country according to 247 Sports. He’s planning to decide some time in July and it’s thought to be between Iowa and Ohio State, though a Notre Dame offer could change things up. Stay tuned to this one as Waggoner paired with AJ Epenesa on the edge could evoke images of some of the top defenses in Iowa history.
On Friday, the Hawkeyes kicked off their first recruiting tailgater of the summer. The attendees included both 2018 commits, 2018 recruits and 2019 recruits. Here’s a quick list of the guys already committed in the class of 2018 who made the trip:
2018 Current Commits Visiting
3-star LB Dillon Doyle - 6’3” 215 lbs from Iowa City, IA
3-star ATH Samson Evans - 6’1” 190 lbs from Crystal Lake, IL
3-star RB Henry Geil - 6’ 210 lbs from Green Bay, WI
3-star OG Jeff Jenkins - 6’4” 275 lbs from Crystal Lake, IL
3-star WR Tyrone Tracy - 6’ 185 lbs from Indianapolis, IN
In addition to the already committed members of the 2018 class, Iowa hosted a couple potential commits in the class. All visitors already held offers prior to the visit.
4-star DB Julius Brents - 6’2” 180 lbs from Indianapolis, IN
3-star DT Bryson Williams - 6’2” 295 lbs from Lincoln, NE
3-star TE/OT Jack Plumb - 6’8” 240 lbs from Green Bay, WI
There were supposed be a few additional visitors in the class, but there were late scratches from the list for varying reasons. Missouri DB Dallas Craddieth was planning to bring his younger brother, but ended up not coming due to logistics issues. It was a similar story for Indiana TE Anthony Torres and his teammate and fellow Hawkeye recruit Paul Moala. All three mentioned they intend to get to Iowa City sometime before school starts back up.
Noah Shannon was another name mentioned as a potential visitor. The Oswego, IL defensive tackle is said to be deciding between Iowa and Minnesota very soon. You may recall he previously committed to Minnesota before re-thinking things. The cancelled visit could be a bad omen, but we’ll have to wait and see.
3-star athlete Dashon Bussell was another rumored to be on the visit list. He recently relocated from Fort Wayne, IN to Knoxville, TN and couldn’t make the trip to Iowa. There are rumors swirling that he would be a Hawkeye already if it weren’t for academic issues. As we saw with Daviyon Nixon last week, those can be an issue so it makes sense the staff may be pushing Bussell to get through another semester of school before they’re willing to take a commitment.
All three of the guys who did make it to campus are officially on commit watch heading into July. None of them will announce too soon, but Iowa has to feel good about their chances with each. Brents is a big time corner prospect who could extend that pipeline Kelvin Bell is building in Indiana. I think he ends up a Hawkeye. Williams is a kid from Lincoln who was told by Nebraska he didn’t fit their scheme. Their loss. He’s a house and would be a great addition. I think he was on the verge of committing to Iowa a week ago, then Wisconsin dropped an offer and his process has been delayed. I still think Iowa has a good chance, but he’ll take his time to evaluate the new options.
And Jack Plumb is a monster of a human being who currently plays TE, but looks like the kind of kid who comes to Iowa, works with Doyle and leaves a top 10 draft pick at left tackle. He’s from Green Bay and no doubt grew up a Wisconsin fan, but he has a great relationship with Henry Geil, who’s also from Green Bay and is firmly committed to Iowa. The visit appeared to go well for Plumb and I think the Hawkeyes have made the decision between Iowa and Wisconsin a seriously tough one for him.
Beyond the guys in the class of 2018, Iowa hosted a number of prospects in the class of 2019. And that’s where things really heated up for the Hawkeyes this weekend as they landed a pair of big time recruits.
4-star TE Logan Lee - 6’5” 225 lbs from Orion, IL
4-star OL Tyler Endres - 6’6” 280 lbs from Norwalk, IA
4-star RB Jirehl Brock - 6’ 180 lbs from Quincy, IL
3-star DB Larry Tracy - 5’10” 175 lbs from Indianapolis, IN
N/A DE Spencer Bono - 6’4” 215 lbs from Cincinnati, OH (only Friday the 23rd)
As I said, this is where things got good for Iowa as the first two guys listed here, Lee and Endres, both left Iowa City as Hawkeyes commits. Both are 4-star prospects by all services that have assigned ratings and both look damn good. You can catch the full write-up on their commitment here. They join Ezra Miller in making the entirety of the 2019 class consensus 4-star guys. I know, I know, stars don’t matter. And I agree on an individual kid. But you group together a whole bunch of kids that are all higher rated than a bunch of other kids and I think the average is going to be better. And this group of 2019 kids looks damn good.
Jirehl Brock of Quincy, IL (shouts to the tri-state area, aka home) could make it 4-for-4. He’s another 4-star and looks like a potential stud of a running back. He is apparently close with basically everyone who made the trip and got in tight with 2018 RB commit Henry Geil. He’s said Iowa is on top and given the proximity and the relationship he’s building, you have to like the Hawkeye’s chances. He also has offers from Michigan State, Illinois, Missouri among others. He also has early interest (but no offer yet) from the likes of Penn State and Ohio State. He could be a real get to go with the 3 big guys already added in this class.
Larry Tracy is another guy Iowa fans should feel pretty good about. He’s the cousin of 2018 commit Tyrone Tracy and the two made the trip to Iowa City together. It was his first visit to the state and it sounds like he came away impressed. He’s got offers from Indiana and Syracuse among some mid-majors, but also has some mutual interest with Virginia Tech. They may be a name to watch, but with his entire family aboard the Hawkeye Express, I’d expect him to be in the black and gold.
The weekend wrapped up with a camp on Sunday. There were a ton of potential prospects on campus, including one of Bob Stoops’ sons, but it was mostly recruits who don’t already hold an offer. But the headliner was a top target in the class of 2019. Max Duggan is a 6’2” 180 lb QB from Council Bluffs who is being regarded as one of the top prospects to come out of this state in a long time. He’s a consensus 4-star and holds offers from Nebraska, Penn State, Minnesota, North Carolina (though they’ve added a few QBs in 2018 and may not need one in 2019), Kansas State, Iowa State and others. It’s still early and his recruitment will certainly continue to pick up.
With the increased attention, I would expect Duggan to take his time, but he has noted he has a relationship with a number of the recruits Iowa has coming, namely the recent commits Logan Lee and Tyler Endres. Expect those guys to be in his ear plenty.
As I mentioned in the open, we are officially in a dead period now through July 9th so I wouldn’t expect a ton of news in the way of new offers. We could, however, see some potential commitments. I’d expect most of the guys I mentioned as potential commits to hold off until at least the second week in July, but it’s always possible we get some good news early.
Keep those Twitter feeds updated and your browsers locked on the home page. We’ll keep you updated on any news on the recruiting trail.