Texas Two Step

Plano West (Texas) teammates Wes Simon and Bridger Dutton are at the ISU padded camp, and like what they see thus far. In fact, they even got a chance to meet the top player in the state of Iowa for the class of 2006, who just might become a Cyclone on Monday.

By Amanda Ouverson CN correspondent

Date: June 16, 2005

 

Plano West teammates Wes Simon and Bridger Dutton said nothing compares to football in Texas.

 

"Texas has about 12,000 people [at games]," Simon said. "The whole week is devoted to football – pep rallies, bands, fireworks, Comcast comes and films everything – it's like nothing else. The next step is Division I. You won't find greater football than anywhere in Texas."

 

Dutton, the son of 3-time pro-bowler John Dutton, said the best part is the competition.

 

"It's really hot, it's about getting down and dirty," he said. "It's really fun and great to be in that competitive of a nature."

 

At 6-foot-1 and 284 pounds, Simon was an all-state, all-county and all-district selection in Texas. He plays tackle at Plano West, but has been offered scholarships from Northwestern, VMI, Tulsa, Iowa State, Kansas and Colorado to play center. Other schools are also trying to get his attention, but Simon said he wants to play in the Big Ten or Big 12.

 

"Miami's interested," he said. "They put a lot of people in the NFL, but I'm perfectly fine here because of how gorgeous it is and the coaches act like a family."

 

The ISU coaching staff is known it's family atmosphere, and Simon said they practice what they preach.

 

"Coach Alford is the best guy," Simon said. "He's the funniest guy; he'll joke around with you. He acts like your dad off the field, but on the field he can probably kick your [butt]. I haven't met one bad guy on the staff. There's a lot of schools I went to and they were real stuck up and into themselves, but everyone here is just great."

 

One coach in particular stands out to Dutton, a 6-foot-2, 230 pound linebacker.

 

"I love Coach Mac," Dutton said. "He is awesome. He is the best coach I've ever met."

 

An all-district and all-county selection, Dutton said he's been shown a lot of interest, but has no offers yet. Iowa State is one school he'd like to hear from.

 

"I like Iowa State a lot," he said. "I thought it was really fun. It's a great camp. There's a lot of great coaches."

 

Simon and Dutton are midway through a mini-tour of the Midwest. They've camped at Oklahoma and Iowa and are on their way to Nebraska.

"[We're] trying to be recruited as a team," Dutton said. "We're just going to a lot of camps. We're going to Texas A&M in July and [Simon's] going to Penn State also."

 

Another potential piece to the class of 2006 - Austen Arnaud – was also in the camps attendance. The Ames High quarterback will make his college choice official on Monday, but took the time to meet the two Texans.

 

"[Arnaud] seems like a great guy," Simon said. "I saw him – he moves really well. I think it'd be an honor to come and play with him and I'm sure he'd be honored to play with me, so it'd be great. We'd win some games and hopefully a national championship."

 


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