Windy City Transplant

Chicago has long been fertile recruiting territory for Midwestern college football teams, and Iowa State would like to open its pipeline to the Windy City. One player that may help them establish that in 2006 is an offensive lineman who checked out ISU's padded camp this week.

Jay and Lori Sippel have heard all the coaches' spiels before.


Their eldest son Jason plays on the offensive line for Ball State, after all, so they're familiar with the recruiting process.  But the couple took a liking to Iowa State Coach Dan McCarney after the first day of ISU's padded football camp.


"He welcomed us and thanked us for coming," Jay said. "He's very nice, very down-to-earth and very outgoing. They have a good program here. Every year the program is getting stronger, so it'd be a great opportunity to come to Iowa State."


Their son Brett plays right guard on the offensive line at Lake Zurich High School, a northwest Chicago suburb, and will be a senior this fall. Iowa State is at the top of list when it comes to his football future.


"Engineering is his first love along with football at the same time," Jay said. "It'd be a good fit if he had the opportunity [to play at Iowa State]."


Brett said he hasn't looked into Iowa State's engineering program but plans to do so in the near future. Right now he's concentrating on getting his name out at camps and giving coaches a chance to evaluate his skills. Brett just finished participating in Ball State's camp and will travel to camps at Michigan, Western Michigan and Illinois before the summer's done.

Having an older brother who's been in the same position has helped Brett prepare for the rigors of recruiting. His brother told him to work hard, be aggressive and coachable.

Brett weighs in at 270 pounds and stands 6-foot-4, he gives up 15 pounds to his brother.


 "Oh we used to battle," he said. "We still battle today every time he comes home from college. We always put up a good fight."


Early on Brett said he likes what he sees from the ISU camp.


"It's been outstanding, very informative," he said. "I'm very interested in [Iowa State]. I'd love to go here, it's a beautiful campus. They have a great coaching staff and football team."


The ISU coaches had a few words of wisdom for Brett.


"They told me just keep on working hard and they'll be in touch," he said.


And Jay hopes the ISU coaches are in contact, he doesn't mind the 350-mile drive.


"We'd like to get that car going back and forth from Chicago to Ames on Saturdays," Jay said.

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