The Iowa Hawkeyes took a bit of a hiatus in March after building some momentum in February. That’s not to say the Hawkeyes weren’t hard at work, they were. Iowa hosted a slew of visitors over the last few weeks and the staff has no doubt been doing what they do in terms of keeping up the contact. But after feeling in three commitments in less than two weeks, it’s now been almost a month since Iowa fans were treated to a new commit.
That streak ended Monday night as Chicagoland safety John Nestor announced his commitment to the Hawkeyes.
Nestor is yet another in a long line of fancy toys for Phil Parker to play with as he continues to use his reputation to build an absolutely lethal defense. The Marist product was a lockdown corner as a junior, earning him All-Chicago Catholic League honors. He finished second on the team in tackles behind 4-star Michigan linebacker commit Jimmy Rolder with 63 on the season. That’s an impressive 4.8 tackles per game for a corner.
The impressive tackle numbers, which also included 3.5 tackles for loss, come on the back of some really impressive instincts. On film, Nestor routinely sniffs out edge runs, options and quick passes to blow up potentially big runs for very short gains. He’s a sure tackler who doesn’t shy away from contact and tackles with momentum through contact.
That ability in run support and tackling in the open field are why Iowa is recruiting him as a safety. At 6’1” and 190 pounds as a junior, Nestor has ideal size for the position coming out of high school. He also possesses very fluid hips for a safety given his career to-date has been played at corner. He’s capable of playing on an island with receivers, often running their route for them and undercutting them for interceptions - a stat he led the Redhawks in at 4 on the season.
All told, Nestor finished his junior year with the 63 tackles, including 3.5 for loss, a sack, 4 interceptions, an incredible 10 passes broken up and 3 forced fumbles. The film looks exactly as good as the numbers and it’s no wonder Phil Parker was ready to extend an offer in early March.
As for why Iowa, Nestor said it just felt like the perfect fit. Speaking with Edgy Tim, Nestor said the Hawkeyes have been the favorite since he first made a visit to Iowa City.
“Iowa is just the perfect fit for me. Iowa has been my favorite ever since we got off of I-80 when we drove into town to make my first visit to Iowa. I was planning to wait on making a decision, but why wait when I already know where I want to be so I committed.
“Iowa just has always felt like home. The first time I was on campus and met the Iowa coaches it felt right. The Iowa staff made us feel so welcomed and made us feel like a part of the family. Iowa also has had such awesome development at the defensive back position and Coach (Phil) Parker is someone I know can make me become the best possible player I can. Iowa has had so many All Big Ten defensive backs over the years, and so many other who have gone onto the pro’s and have had record of success is really impressive. The stability of the entire Iowa staff is another big factor in my decision. Coach (Kirk) Ferentz has his family in Iowa and he loves it there. The entire coaching staff at Iowa has so much connection to the Iowa program. The Iowa staff is stacked with guys who have been there for a long time, and I know that I will be able to play for a program that has coaches who will be there and who I trust.”
Nestor chose Iowa over offers from Minnesota, Purdue, Iowa State, Kansas and a slew of MAC offers. He’s a three-star prospect according to both Rivals and 247 Sports.
His addition makes it 8 commits in Iowa’s class of 2023. His addition jumps the Hawkeyes to 10th nationally according to Rivals and 7th according to 247 Sports. That’s good for 3rd in the Big Ten on Rivals and 2nd per 247 Sports. Its also tops in the Big Ten West and behind only Penn State and Ohio State (Rivals).
Welcome aboard John Nestor!