French will make an official visit to Ames for the Aug. 30 season-opener against North Dakota State. The JUCO tight end from Saddleback in San Clemente, Calif., currently has offers from Iowa State and Illinois.
“I’m excited to see the campus and see how rowdy the games are and how exciting it’ll be to actually be down there and see a game personally,” French told AllCyclones.com. “Besides that, just seeing the facilities in person. I’ve seen them online and stuff and they look amazing, so seeing them in person will definitely be a big opportunity for me to get to see everything myself.”
French, at 6-foot-4 and 245 pounds, made 32 catches for 364 yards and five touchdowns in 11 games last season for Saddleback. He was occasionally flexed out with the help of his speed, and he said blocking is something he doesn’t take lightly.
The Cyclones will graduate tight end E.J. Bibbs at the conclusion of this season, and French could provide immediate experience with redshirt junior Ben Boesen and redshirt freshman Alex Leslie currently behind Bibbs as the season begins.
French is likely deciding between Iowa State and Illinois.
“They’re just telling me they want a JUCO guy to come in so they can have them play right away and get familiar with the offense and have a good season,” French said. “Talking to coaches they made it sound like I would fit in their offense really well. I’m a very versatile tight end, I don’t just like to block, I like to be flexed out. Everything they’ve told me so far sounds good, sounds like a good fit for me.”
Iowa State seems likely to take one JUCO tight end in the 2015 Class, and also has an offer out to Matt Morin, a former Saddleback teammate of French who now plays at Riverside in Temecula, Calif. The two each have offers from Iowa State and Illinois, so it’s possible whichever commits first could be the deciding factor.
For now, French’s visit to Iowa State next weekend is the only one marked on his calendar, although Illinois is currently working out details of a potential date and time for the tight end to visit.
French would consider committing quickly, he said, if his first visit goes well.
“If I did have a really good feeling about it and knew it was a perfect fit for me, I would be pretty confident in committing,” French said. “Having that said, I would still like to go visit Illinois and just check that out because they’ve been recruiting me hard, too.”