Howe Intrigued by Rhoads' Intensity, ISU

Nearly five years later, Paul Rhoads' viral "So Proud" video is still making an impression on recruits. Ohio defensive tackle Kraig Howe, a recent Cyclones offer, discusses his impressions of Rhoads and Iowa State with

The way Kraig Howe was told it went down, Iowa State's coaching and recruiting staff gathered around a roundtable at the Bergstrom Football Complex in February and went through his resumé.

"I was told the staff was in there watching my film and after watching it, they reviewed the different credentials I had," Howe said Sunday. "Captain of the basketball team as a junior, captain of the football team next year, my GPA is high (3.8), I don't get in trouble. And they went around and gave thumbs-up on the offer."

Running backs coach Louis Ayeni let Howe, a three-star 6-foot-3, 255-pound defensive tackle from Archbishop Alter (Ohio), know the Cyclones were offering. Head coach Paul Rhoads spoke to Howe as well.

Howe had a relationship with Ayeni back when the latter was at Toledo.

"Coach Lou at Toledo offered me and then he came over to Iowa State so he knew me from there," Howe said. "I was talking with him and he let me know Iowa State was offering me. That was really cool to pick up that offer."

The Cyclones offered two 2015 Ohio prospects last week, thanks to Ayeni — Howe and quarterback Joey Burrow.

Howe returned from Notre Dame's Junior Day visit without an offer. The Cyclones are the first Big 12 team to offer him a full ride. Boston College, Illinois, Miami (Ohio), Northwestern, Pitt and Toledo are the other FBS schools with offers out.

A prior obligation will keep Howe from attending Iowa State's March 8 Junior Day but he hopes to get to Ames soon. He saw Des Moines years ago on a trip as a fifth-grader.

"I talked to [Rhoads] on the phone," Howe said. "He seems like a caring dude. He's excited about getting me down there and I'm excited, too … I'm pumped to get there and hopefully I can get there soon."

While doing short research on Iowa State, it's no surprise Howe stumbled upon Rhoads' post game speech following the Cyclones' 9-6 win over Nebraska in Lincoln, the viral video of the "So proud" fame.

"I was looking at that," Howe said. "I was watching videos on Coach Rhoads and it got me fired up, it really did. The whole locker room scene, it was a great atmosphere. The energy was there, it was really cool."

The Big 12 schedule and competition level are other positives ISU has in its favor, per Howe.

AllCyclones Top Stories