Freshman Brian Allen never expected a scholarship offer to come this early. Not before he had ever played a down of varsity football or gone to any college camps. But in recent days, the 6-foot-1, 245-pound offensive lineman and his family confirmed that he already has a verbal offer on the table from the Iowa Hawkeyes.
"When my dad first told me that Iowa was going to offer, I thought he was kidding at first," said Allen. "I mean I'm only a freshman, so it's kind of unreal for them to do that now, but we called Coach Ferentz today and he confirmed it."
The Iowa coaching staff is very familiar with the Allen family as this past year they recruited Brian's older brother, Jack, who ultimately signed with Michigan State in February. The Hawkeyes are hoping to have better luck this time around with the Class of 2014 prospect.
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"I went up to Iowa with my brother when he visited and they have an awesome campus and awesome facilities," Allen said. "I've met Coach Ferentz and some of the staff before and they all seem like really nice guys."
This past season, Allen played on the freshman team at Hinsdale Central High School in Illinois, starting at center and linebacker. In 2011, he is expected to take over for his brother at the center position on the varsity team where his position coach will be former Hawkeye Mike Jones, who helped get the ball rolling with Iowa's recruitment.
In addition to football, Allen's biggest accomplishment as a freshman probably came on the wrestling mat where posted a 39-8 record and placed third in the state at 215 pounds competing in Illinois' largest class.
"I think my wrestling background helped a lot with the Iowa offer," said Allen. "They are big on wrestling up there and it seems like they end up offering a lot of wrestlers."
Currently, Allen is also receiving some interest from his brother's school, Michigan State, along with Stanford. Still wrapping up just his freshman year of high school, the Class of 2014 prospect plans to be patient with the recruiting process, but is pleasantly surprised by the early attention.
"It's unreal," Allen said. "After getting the offer, I think I just have to work harder now. It's inspiring and will drive me to do more and be even better."