clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

81 Days until Hawkeye Football: Cael Vanderbush

The Indiana product is in his second year of the program

Syndication: HawkCentral Joseph Cress/Iowa City Press-Citizen / USA TODAY NETWORK

Welcome back to our countdown to the Iowa Hawkeyes football season. We’re back on schedule with a second-year player out of Indiana.

Cael Vanderbush, RS Fr.
6-4, 208 lbs.
Plainfield, Ind. (Plainfield)
2023 projection: reserve tight end

Vanderbush joined the Hawkeyes after an impressive four-year career for Plainfield. In his time there, he lined up in line and out wide to the tune of over 1400 yards as a junior & senior with 14 combined touchdowns. He returned kickoffs his junior year while he functioned at quarterback in his sophomore year. Like many prior Iowa tight ends, he was a dual sport athlete with basketball as his double-scoop:

His senior year, he averaged over 20 yards/reception on the back of multiple 50+ yarders. He’s shows nice elusiveness in tight spaces in addition to the speed for his height.

The Hawkeyes flipped Vanderbush from Western Michigan and ultimately selected the Hawkeyes over them, Air Force, and Utah.

If there’s one thing to be desired by the youngster, it’s his size. Despite the 6’4” frame, he’s yet to put on the pounds typically seen from Hawkeye tight ends who normally end up in the 250 range. In his high school tape, he looks like a solid blocker but at present, he’d be going up against much bigger dudes unless his future is at wideout*.

(there’s nothing to suggest on Iowa’s website to suggest he’s moving out wide, just my own hypothetical)

The good thing is that his talents are not needed for the 2023 season with Erick All, Luke Lachey, Steve Stillianos, and Addison Ostrenga most notably ahead of him. With Ostrenga as the only fellow second-year tight end clearly ahead of him, there’s still plenty of time for Vanderbush to make his mark.