As National Signing Day approaches on Feb. 4, AllCyclones.com is catching up with Iowa State's 2015 commits. There may be no better place to start than with Bobby McMillen, the first commit for the Cyclones in the 2015 class.
McMillen is a 6-foot, 210-pound linebacker from Naperville Central (Ill.). While guiding his team to a 9-3 record during his senior season, McMillen recorded 149 tackles, two interceptions and two touchdowns. He is expected to play weakside linebacker for the Cyclones upon his arrival.
What stood out about Iowa State in your visit and conversations that made you want to commit?
When I visited Iowa State, I believe it was March 8 the day I committed, I was with my mother and my little brother and sister were there too, my dad was out in California for his job. I told my dad, ‘Listen, I want you to be here, I’m not going to do anything drastic today,’ and everything like that. But as the day went on and I just saw how friendly everybody was — I know a lot of times coaches are friendly just because you’ve got recruits there and everything like that and they put a smile on their face and try to tell you this, that or the other — but I genuinely thought every single one of the people on the staff, players, just throughout the entire building was a good, genuine person. It made me feel like I was in the family before I was even part of the program to begin with.
That was probably the biggest thing that got me to go to Iowa State is just the family atmosphere and how close everybody is and how well you get treated by the coaches and by the staff.
When you think about your future and think about the coming months, what excites you about Iowa State and getting to Ames?
The most exciting thing for me is just getting to work with all the guys. I believe that this recruiting class and the guys we have in the program right now have the potential to be something great. Honestly. I’m not just talking from a recruiting standpoint and being biased toward Iowa State. I truly believe everybody in that building and with the recruits coming in — especially with all the JUCO guys we got this year and all the high school kids we’ve picked up — I truly believe we can be something special in these upcoming years.
The biggest thing that excites me is just getting to work and getting the camaraderie and building a relationship with guys I haven’t built one with yet.
Some people watch film and see film, but for people who haven’t seen you, how would you describe your game to those people?
To be honest with you, there are a lot better athletes throughout this entire country than myself. I’m not the fastest guy, I’m not the strongest, I can’t jump the highest, but I believe what separates me from others on the field is just my intensity in the game, being able to play 110 percent the entire game all four quarters is probably what separates myself from other people. My ability to play sideline to sideline every play, a high-motor guy and being able to make any play I can. The want to be in every play and everything like that.
I also would say one of my biggest assets is my knowledge of the game, too. Growing up as a coach’s son, it’s definitely a benefit, especially as a linebacker. Being able to sniff out plays before they even happen is probably something that helps me be successful on the field, as well.
If you had to key in on something that you want to work on between now and when the season starts, what would it be?
The biggest thing that separates high school athletes from college athletes is the speed of the game. The difference in athleticism from the high school level to the college level is absolutely tremendous. I would definitely say speed and strength and just being in the gym as much as I can and getting faster and stronger so I can be able to play with those big boys at the college level.
What are you hoping to take out of this upcoming weekend?
First of all, I want to have a great time with my family. Being out there, my whole family is actually coming down. Being able to spend my time in Ames with them is going to be a great time. But also, I think one of the biggest things I’m looking forward to is just getting all the guys together.
This is the first time I'll be able to see Denver, Dom, all those guys as a whole. The only type of communication we all have is between our group text messages. I’m kind of getting sick of that and I want to start building a physical relationship with those guys and start bonding and getting that brotherhood together because we’re going to be spending the next four or five years of our life together.