UPDATE: Iowa is out of the recruitment of E.C. Matthews according to his head coach at Romulus High, Nate Oats.
Oats said Thursday afternoon that the Hawkeye coaches told him that they were getting a commitment from an in-state prospect in the Class of 2013. They told Austin Price the same thing on Wednesday.
Peter Jok from West Des Moines (Iowa) Valley High, who is scheduled to officially visit the Hawkeyes this weekend. Jok said he has not committed to them.
You can read more on his recruitment and his thoughts on Iowa in the story that follows.
The search to fill Iowa's remaining basketball scholarship in the 2013 class took another turn this week. To say it's been a fluid situation would be an understatement.
Wednesday, combo guard Austin Price announced he would not be officially visiting the Hawkeyes this weekend. The school called off the trip. In other words, Coach Fran McCaffery pulled the scholarship offer.
We learned on the same day that West Des Moines (Iowa) Valley High wing Peter Jok would be officially visiting Iowa starting on Friday. McCaffery attended an open gym on Monday, liked what he saw from 6-foot-5, 175-pounder and invited him back to campus.
Jok, who visited Iowa unofficially last month, has been recovering from knee surgery he underwent during the summer of 2011. It cost him some of his explosiveness. He showed McCaffery on Monday that he had regained it.
Per NCAA rules, McCaffery can't talk about Jok until he signs a national letter of intent. As a result, there's been conflicting information about whether or not the high school senior has a Hawkeye scholarship offer.
"Yeah, people always think differently, but they offered me," Jok said Thursday.
Things would be easier if everything were black and white in recruiting. Unfortunately, semantics and the aforementioned fluidity can sometimes make the process tough to follow.
"They're playing their cards pretty tight," Horner said when asked if Jok held an offer from the Hawkeye coaches. "I'm not sure what they're thinking."
Recruiting is a business. Players keep schools waiting and guessing. Coaches do the same thing to athletes.
Price isn't the first prospect to have his visit canceled by McCaffery. It happened to Matthew Glover, who ended up at Penn State and has since transferred to San Francisco. There have been others.
McCaffery let the Price recruitment play out as long as he could because he didn't know who else would be in play by the time the guard was ready to commit. He also was continuing to evaluate players.
Price wanted to decide next week. The Iowa coach decided he would pass on him and continue the process with Jok and E.C. Matthews, another Michigan guard who officially visited Iowa earlier this month.
So, does Iowa's last remaining '13 scholarship end up with whichever remaining player jumps on it? We don't know for sure, but that could be part of the coach's approach here.
Matthews wants to visit more schools, according to his Romulus High coach, Nate Oats. Maybe the guard is motivated to speed up the process if he knows the Iowa scholarship could be gobbled up by Jok. It also could work the other way around.
Iowa is Jok's only offer at this point, he said. Drake gave him a Wednesday deadline to take its ride. He assumed that the Bulldogs have pulled it since he didn't commit.
"A lot of schools want to see me go though the high school season before they offer me," Jok said. "They want to see if I'm really back so they are just talking to me right now."
Jok could wait until the April signing period if he feels he can snag more offers with a good senior season at Valley. He's hearing from schools like Wisconsin and Kansas State on a consistent basis and they could be options down the road.
"I'm trying to commit before the high school season, but I'm just going to go (to Iowa this weekend) and If I like it I'll go from there," Jok said.
It would be naive to think that Jok and Matthews are the only players being considered by McCaffery for the last '13 spot. He and his assistants are traveling the country during this current open period.
Perhaps the Iowa staff won't need to dig deeper in this class. McCaffery has impressed Jok during the process.
"I think he's a great coach," he said. "I would fit in great with the program from what he told me. They spread and just run, which fits me. He also cares a lot about his players."