February 12, 2013
Iowa targets in Rivals250
The ink is hardly dry on the Class of 2013 and college football coaches are already hard at work on the Class of 2014. Rivals.com released their Top 250 for 2014 on Wednesday and the Hawkeye coaches have several top targets on the list, along with one verbal commitment.
The verbal commitment making the Top 100 is Ross Pierschbacher from Cedar Falls, IA. The 6-foot-4 future offensive tackle verbally committed to Iowa over Notre Dame last month. Pierschbacher comes in at #79 on the list.
Iowa's other 2014 commit, Jay Scheel, just missed out on making the Top 250, but he will likely be a four star prospect when they are released.
Those aren't the only names that Hawkeye fans should be watching as we turn our full attention to the Class of 2014.
Looking at the Rivals 250, there are six prospects from the Chicago area with Iowa offers who made the list. From a need perspective, the top name with an Iowa offer is Clifton Garrett from Joliet. The 6-foot-3 and 220 pounder is ranked as the #53 prospect in the class. The significance from the Iowa perspective is that Garrett is friends with 2013 signee Reggie Spearman. Garrett recently visited Iowa City and said he loved the trip. He also said he plans on making a return trip with his parents in the future. Garrett is expected to visit Ohio State this weekend and is getting plenty of interest from SEC schools.
With Pierschbacher already committed and offensive line, specifically tackle, being a need area in 2014, the Hawkeyes will make a strong push to land Jamarco Jones from De LaSalle High School. The 6-foot-5 and 285 pounder is ranked by Rivals.com as the 94th best prospect in this class and will certainly dual Pierschbacher for the title of top tackle in the Midwest in 2014. Jones already holds over 20 offers and it looks like Ohio State and Notre Dame will be top contenders.
The Hawkeyes wouldn't mind getting a De LaSalle package deal that would include Jones and his teammate, Mikale Wilbon. The Hawkeyes jumped in early with an offer to the dynamic back who Rivals.com ranks at #151 in the Class of 2014. Wilbon, who rushed for 863 yards and 12 touchdowns in just four games as a junior, visited Iowa last fall. He currently holds 7 scholarship offers with a host of big named schools staying in touch.
Another back with an Iowa offer is Justin Jackson, who Rivals.com ranks at #222 in 2014. Jackson, who plays at Glenbard North High School, holds 8 offers, including one from Iowa. He recently made an unofficial visit to Nebraska, who has not offered.
Another frequent visitor to Iowa City is Rivals.com's #234 prospect, Clayton Thorson. The quarterback prospect picked up an Iowa offer last fall and has 8 total offers. His most recent visit was for Iowa's Junior Day. Based on his offer list, it certainly appears that the 6-foot-4 and 190 pound signal caller will end up in the Big Ten. The question is which school will win the recruiting battle. Right now it appears that Iowa will be there up until the very end.
One final Chicago area prospect in the Rivals 250 with an Iowa offer is Parker Westphal from Bolingbrook High School. The 6-foot-1 and 186 pound cornerback already holds over 20 offers and is ranked as the 213th best prospect in the class. Iowa's chances might not be great with Westphal, who has long been rumored to be a Michigan lean.
Defensive end is a huge need for the Hawkeyes in 2014 and they have extended a scholarship offer to one of the top prospects in the country in Solomon Thomas from Coppell, TX. The Hawkeyes will face huge uphill battle to get the 6-foot-3 and 263 end out of the Lone Star State simply because he already holds offers from Texas and Texas A&M. Solomon is ranked by Rivals.com as the 28th best prospect in the class.
Iowa has tried to hit the state of Texas hard in the past couple of classes and it looks like they will continue to 2014. Iowa has already offered defensive backs Jamal Adams (Lewisville HS) and pair of players from Timberview High School in Manfield in Brandon Simmons and Edward Paris. Adams is the #33 overall prospect. Paris comes in at #38 and Simmons is ranked #200 overall.
At the receiver position, Iowa hasn't given up the ship with #24 ranked prospect Allen Lazard. The Iowa State legacy committed early to the Cyclones, but the Hawkeyes, in particular Head Coach Kirk Ferentz, was through his high school in the past month. It's certainly unlikely that Lazard would flip to the Hawkeyes, but Iowa continues to work on the top rated prospect in the state for 2014.
The Hawkeyes have also offered Indiana prospects Dominique Booth and Austin Roberts. It looks like Iowa is on the outside looking in with Booth, who Rivals ranks as the 225th prospect in the class. Iowa's chances with Roberts might be a little better. Roberts projects to the tight end position at the college level and has 9 scholarship offers, including one from Iowa. He is also waiting to see whether schools like Michigan and Notre Dame extend a scholarship offer.
One big name that was surprisingly not on the Rivals 250 is Orlando Brown Jr., the massive offensive tackle out of Georgia. His father played for Kirk Ferentz in the NFL and a 6-foot-7 and 340 pounds, he looks the part. Brown has offers from nearly every top program in the country and continues to mention the Hawkeyes among his top six schools.
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