Kornbrath Solid with Iowa

Connor Kornbrath finally got a chance to see a game Saturday at Iowa, the school he verbally committed to in June. The '12 WV punter talked about the trip and why a recent West Virginia offer won't take him away from the Hawkeyes.

Connor Kornbrath lives in Bridgeport, a town less than 30 miles from Morgantown, home to West Virginia University. As you'd expect, a lot of Mountaineer fans also reside in that area.

WVU came through with a scholarship offer for Kornbrath earlier this month. The natives became excited thinking he would jump on the Mountaineer opportunity being a local kid and all.

One problem: The Class of 2012 punter already verbally committed to Iowa in late June. He officially visited the Hawkeyes with his parents on this weekend. He didn't sound like a player looking to change his allegiance.

"Almost everyone here is trying to get me to go to WVU," the 6-foot-7, 210-pound Kornbrath said. "It's not going to affect me. I know I'm going to Iowa.

"(The WVU offer) is nice to have, but I know I'm going to be sticking to the Hawkeyes."

Kornbrath camped at Iowa this summer and shortly after that received and accepted a scholarship offer. Saturday, he saw his first Hawkeye game live at Kinnick Stadium. The home team drilled Indiana, 45-24, on Homecoming.

"That just really blew me away, the environment," Kornbrath said. "The first time, I saw some of the campus. I didn't have that much time to see as much as I wanted.

"This weekend, I got to see everything, what Iowa had in store for me. It was just great. It just strengthened me wanting to be a Hawkeye."

Freshman kicker Marshall Koehn hosted Kornbrath on Friday night. Long snapper Casey Kreiter took over on Saturday night.

Despite Iowa being in a different time zone than is West Virginia, Kornbrath feels at home with the Hawkeyes.

"A lot has to do with the coaches and the hospitality they've shown me the two times I was there," he said. "I really like the campus and the town of Iowa City. It just feels like it's right for me, the best fit."

Bridgeport High stands at 8-0 with two games remaining in the regular season. It is ranked second in the state.

Kornbrath is playing a big role in the success of the team as the kicker and punter. In addition to a high percentage of touchbacks on kickoffs, he's hit on 7 of 9 field goal attempts including a game-winner. He is average around 43.0 yards per punt.

Kornbrath said he is aware that three Iowa specialist alums - Ryan Donahue, Nate Kaeding and Jason Baker - currently are in the NFL.

"It just seems like Iowa is pumping out NFL specialists," Kornbrath said. "Hopefully that could maybe be me one day."

The Iowa coaches have told Kornbrath that he has a chance to see the field early in college.

"They said I could be the starting punter (in '12)," he said. "I'm just going to show up for camp in June and try to show them I can do it."

Kornbrath intends to study journalism in college in hopes of becoming a sports writer.


Hawkeye Insider Top Stories