ISU Takes Next Step with Catlett

On a national scale, the Fort Collins (Colo.) prep getting the most attention is offensive lineman Jon Cooper, but one of his offensive teammates is also picking up momentum on the summer camp circuit. His recruitment gained even more steam on Thursday afternoon at Iowa State.

After watching him for two sessions at padded camp Thursday, Cyclone coaches decided to offer a scholarship to tight end Derrick Catlett, a 6-foot-4, 220-pounder. The senior-to-be shined in one-on-one drills against the camp's best players at his position. He also excelled against one of ISU's commitments for the Class of 2005, A.J. Haase.

That made a great first impression on the coaches who were already impressed with what they'd seen on tape. Catlett was also happy with his first experience in Ames, which will end after Friday's morning session.

"I really meshed well with the coaches and got to talking with them," said Catlett. "When I was with the line, we worked on driving our feet. If you wanted to know, they really helped you out. They helped me work on my hands and foot drive. The receivers coaches made sure I got the right routes and did the little things that would make me better."

What about off the football field?

"The campus is real nice here," he said. "They've got some nice buildings. Their indoor facility was nice. They've got a brand new business building and real nice engineering building, which is what I'm looking into."

While Cooper is approaching double figures in scholarship offers, Catlett is also racking up a nice list of schools. California was the first Division I program to offer, and Kansas State and Iowa may soon follow with scholarships of their own. He'll leave Ames Friday and head to a one-day camp in Iowa City. His next phone call to Kansas State might result in a scholarship offer.

"Those are the big ones right now," Catlett said.

But what about in-state schools Colorado State and Colorado, successful Division I programs that are in his own backyard?

"I've talked to both of them," he said. "I really like CU, but I'm not sure what's going on and if they're going to be on probation. If that's the case, it probably wouldn't be the best choice. It wouldn't bother me at all to go out of state."

Catlett is being recruited only for the offensive side of the ball, and it was easy to why after watching him in a brief seven-on-seven session. As a junior, he hauled in 39 receptions for 608 yards and five touchdowns, earning him second-team all-state and first-team all-Front Range Conference honors.

"I catch the ball really well and don't drop very many balls," he said. "As far as blocking, I get it done one way or another. It might be ugly, but I can do it."

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