Football Recruiting: Refresher 201

With the dead period in football recruiting and the lack of news on Iowa State's front, now is the best time to share some Cyclone news and notes, as well as what we might be able to expect in the coming weeks, as head coach Dan McCarney's staff heads into the stretch run.

I think a lot of action over the next 14 days could come on the junior college front, as ISU coaches learn more about the grades of prospective recruits. I have heard some very encouraging news regarding three to four two-year recruits that visited the weekend of Dec. 12-14. The Cyclones are looking for some immediate help at the linebacker position, and snagging verbals from Reedley College (Calif.) standout Stanley Clark and Co-Lin (La.) playmaker Tim Dobbins would be a big boost.

We also reported several weeks ago that things looked very good with West Hills (Calif.) J.C. defensive back Jerry Gair. That remains the case, but coaches will wait for first semester grades before taking the next steps with Gair and the two JUCO linebackers.

Two more commitments may come from a wide receiver connection that originated at Florida's Lehigh Acres High School. ISU hosted current Lehigh Acres wideout Marcel Pestano and former pass catcher Kenny Jackson, currently a member of the Bakersfield (Calif.) Community College program, during the weekend of Dec. 12-14. However, I've heard Syracuse is a big player with the duo, so the Cyclones will have some competition.

The Cyclones get back in the recruiting mode next weekend. But instead of hosting prospective seniors and two-year players, they will be putting on their annual Junior Day. That weekend will revolve around the men's basketball team's game against Nebraska Saturday at 7 p.m.

Perhaps the most crucial weekend in the recruitment for the Class of 2004 will come the following weekend. At that stage, ISU will be looking to fill some remaining holes. The marquee name on that weekend's roster is Houston (Texas) Westfield defensive tackle Jeray Chatham. The former teammate of Cyclone defenders Brandon Brown and Brent Curvey has some big-time programs on his list, but ISU may have an edge because of their desire for him to play defense.

Chatham will visit Oklahoma State next weekend before making his trek to Ames. He also has scholarship offers from Arizona, Colorado, LSU and Michigan State. However, it is believed all five schools have offered him as an offensive lineman.

Another interior defensive lineman, Dallas (Texas) White's Micah Howeth is also expected to visit the weekend of Jan. 16-18. However, White has made it known that his current favorites are Alabama and Oregon, so ISU will have some ground to make up.

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