As we move through spring, the temperatures are rising across the Midwest and Iowa City has get its share of that over the last week or so. So to is the temperature rising around the Hawkeye state on the recruiting trail. With coaching staffs across the country moving past spring practices and focusing their full attentions on recruiting, activity across the state has really picked up in the last several weeks.
That has culminated in the last week or so as the Iowa coaching staff has been in to visit a number of local high school programs and extending offers to players across the recruiting class of 2023 and 2024. Less than a week ago, the Hawkeyes added in-state linebacker Preston Ries shortly after he earned an offer. Now, the Hawkeyes do the same with in-state safety Zach Lutmer, who announced his commitment to Iowa on Friday afternoon.
The commitment comes less than 24 hours after the Iowa staff extended the offer to Lutmer, a player who has been on not just the Hawkeyes’ radar for a while. Lutmer, who grew up a Minnesota fan in Rock Rapids (less than 10 miles from the Minnesota border), visited Iowa City last fall, as well as making trips to Iowa State and several FCS programs.
The Central Lyon product fits all the stereotypes. He’s a multi-sport athlete and that’s Athlete with a capital “A”. On the hardwood, Lutmer runs point guard and shows serious athleticism for a player standing 6’1” and 195 pounds.
How does a guy that height get up for a two-handed jam in traffic? Don’t skip leg day. And Lutmer apparently doesn’t.
On the gridiron, Lutmer does a little bit of everything. Stop me if you’ve heard/read this before, but he plays quarterback on the offensive side of the ball where he shows some ability to throw the ball, but also an innate ability out-run and out-athlete basically everyone on the field with the ball in his hands.
He averaged 9 yards per carry, finishing his junior season with 1,246 rushing yards and an absurd 31 touchdowns. This after posting 2,900 all-purpose yard and 33 varsity touchdowns as a sophomore for the Lions.
Not to set expectations too high, but it’s hard to watch the highlights and not see a lot of Cooper DeJean in Lutmer. On the defensive side of the ball, it’s a lot of the same. He can run with receivers but is happy and able to come up in run support to clean up missed tackles or close in space to make plays. He finished the year with 47 tackles, 4 interceptions and a pair of forced fumbles. As a sophomore, Lutmer had 34.5 tackles, including 26 solos and 4 more interceptions, including a pair of pick-sixes.
The impressive stats and high level athleticism for a player already with a Big Ten defensive back body helped earn Lutmer a 3-star rating by 247 Sports, as well as offers from South Dakota and South Dakota State, in addition to the Hawkeyes. As noted, Lutmer had also visited Iowa State, who was reportedly pushing for a return visit and likely offer, while the NW Iowa native was expected to camp at Minnesota this summer and likely earn an offer from the Gophers as well.
As it stands, Lutmer becomes Iowa’s 8th commitment in the class of 2023. He’s also Iowa’s fourth commitment from within the state’s borders, joining WR Alex Mota of Marion, LB Ben Kueter of Iowa City and DT Maddux Borcherding-Johnson of Norwalk. With a rise in talent within the Hawkeye state and the recent flurry of activity on the recruiting trail, look for Iowa to continue building momentum within the state’s borders as they try to build on a recruiting class that now sits 18th nationally according to Rivals and 15th according to 247 Sports.
Welcome aboard Zach Lutmer!