Cotton breaks from family tradition

The Cotton family has been a household full of Iowa Hawkeyes for years but that changed Friday when Mount Pleasant (IA) High School's Darian Cotton pledged his commitment to Iowa State.

"It's pretty crazy because my mom went to Iowa, my dad (Marshall) played at Iowa, and my brother (Jordan) is currently playing there so it will be a little wild," said Cotton. "But everything is great and all them told me that they are really proud of me. They were all really excited for me and told me that they'll definitely be cheering for me."

The 6-foot, 160-pound defensive back is already looking forward to the first time the Cyclones take on the Iowa Hawkeyes.

"My brother and I are best friends but I really hope I get to match up against him because I would love to get a chance to get a hit on him," said Cotton. "We're already having a blast going back and forth about what that game will be like."

Darian, who led his team last season in solo tackles, started getting recruited by Iowa State shortly after his junior season.

"Coach Elliott came down to see me and he told me what he liked about ability and how he felt I could fit in with their secondary," he said. "I really liked the fact that Coach Elliott will be my position coach at Iowa State. That made my decision a lot easier."

So what does Coach Elliott like about Cotton?

"He feels that I'm really quick and he said that he likes how I go up and make tackles which I agree with because I really love to hit," said Cotton. "He also likes the fact that I could play cornerback or safety for them. He's not sure yet which position that I will play."

Darian got his offer from the Cyclones not long after displaying his skills in front of Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads.

"He told me that he was impressed with how I play during their camp and that he wanted me to be a Cyclone," he said. "He shook my hand and offered me a full scholarship."

After taking a few weeks to think about it Darian decided to call Coach Rhoads today and end his recruitment.

"He was real excited and I'm just really excited to play for him," said Cotton. "He's a great guy that is always pumped up and he's really making Iowa State a lot better."

Darian, who chose Iowa State over Iowa and South Dakota State, said the decision was really pretty easy for him.

"Their coaching staff is phenomenal and the campus is really a great place," he said. "They also have a good criminal justice program and that is what will my major when I'm at Iowa State."

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