Now well removed from his junior season at Mount Pleasant (IA), quarterback Joe Hess is beginning to settle into his recruitment.
The 6-foot-5, 205-pound quarterback completed nearly 60 percent of his passes and threw for 1,543 yards and 15 touchdowns (to six interceptions) during his junior season at Mount Pleasant while drawing interest from Iowa, Iowa State, Northern Iowa, Western Illinois and Oregon State among others.
As the recruiting focus for schools turns to 2016, it is also turning to Hess.
“I visited schools for game day visits and all that, but once the junior season got over is when most of the schools started contacting me to come visit for junior days and all that,” Hess told AllCyclones.com. “There were a few that had contacted me to go to camp and all that. I’m going to be visiting a few more camps, but other than that nothing really has changed.”
Hess made visits to both Iowa and Iowa State during game days in 2014, and recently visited both Minnesota and Iowa State on Junior Day stops. The junior said Western Illinois and Iowa State have been the primary schools early on that have talked offers, although none have come in the early stages.
In the coming weeks Hess may make trips to both Kansas State and Princeton, and he currently plans to camp at Iowa State, Minnesota, Missouri and potentially Kansas and Indiana during the summer. While much is to be determined with visits, camps and ultimately offers, Hess would like to potentially commit to a school by the time his senior year rolls around.
“Ideally it’d be nice to get committed as early as possible,” Hess said. “I don’t know my exact school that I want to go to yet. I’m keeping my options open. I’m going to be going to a few camps this summer and hopefully I’m going to try to pick up a few offers by June and all that. I’d like to get a verbal in by maybe August ideally. I’ll just wait and see what happens.”
In evaluations from past camps and college coaches, Hess has been told he already has a solid frame and good arm strength. Hess is self-described as a pocket passer and sees himself fitting into Iowa State's system. The goal between now and his senior season is to make improvements with his footwork.
“Footwork has been a big hinder in my game. I’ve been working on that a lot,” Hess said. “Once my footwork is good is when the pros are a lot better. When I went to Iowa that’s the main thing they hit me on was footwork and Western Illinois, they hit me on footwork a lot. I’ve been trying to work on that a lot.”
For now, Hess is feeling out the recruiting process, most recently with his visit to Ames for Junior Day as his recruitment picks up.
“I absolutely loved junior day. The way they treated us, the way we got to meet all the coaches,” Hess said of Iowa State. “I loved how the coaches treated me and stuff. I love it up in Ames.”