Rastetter Expecting to Walk On at Iowa

After an underwhelming season, Iowa is looking for upgrades across the board in recruiting. That includes the punter position, where the Hawkeyes are hoping to land an in-state walk-on with a big leg.

Colten Rastetter need not look far for inspiration. Good friend Bo Bower serves as a shining example of what can happen when you walk on at Iowa.

Bower joined the Hawkeyes as a non-scholarship player before the 2013 season. The former West Branch (IA) standout earned a scholarship this summer and started all 12 games this fall as a redshirt freshman.

"I've followed Iowa's walk-on program for quite a while," Rastetter said. "(Bower) walked on, worked hard and got rewarded for it. Coming from small-town Iowa, you have work for what you get."

Rastetter said that Iowa Recruiting Coordinator Seth Wallace stopped to see him last week at Guttenberg (IA) Clayton Ridge High. The senior punter visited the Hawkeyes for most of their home games this season.

"(Wallace) told me that they would like to have me on the team," the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Rastetter said. "They want me to walk on and create more competition in the punting field right now and help improve them in their special teams."

Iowa struggled in the punting game this year. Dillon Kidd averaged 39.1 yards on 42 punts and Connor Kornbrath kicked 16 times for 36.7. The scholarship juniors finished out of the Big Ten's top 10 at their position.

The Iowa opportunity is one Rastetter likely will take.

"Honestly, with it being my only (walk-on) offer, my dream has been to be a Hawkeye, to walk on to the Black and Gold," he said. "So, probably in a couple weeks, I'll get back in contact with them and probably accept it."

Rastetter averaged 41.5 yards on 45 punts this fall with a long of 69. He recorded six touchbacks on 20 kickoffs. The Iowa Newspaper Association named him first-team all-state for Class 1A.

Iowa State recruited Rastetter as punter for a time, he said. Upper Iowa has pursued him as a receiver and a few Division III schools wanted him as an athlete, he said.

Rastetter played running back, receiver, outside linebacker and safety for Clayton Ridge along with handling the punting and place kicking duties. He has been a key member of the school's basketball, track and baseball programs as well.

Rastetter has participated in former Iowa standout kicker Nate Kaeding's Midwest Kicking Camp the last six years

"My personal opinion, I get good power to the ball. I get good hang time. My leg is my strength," he said. "For my senior year, my focus was more on directional punting at camps. I can do it. I just wanted to more fine tune it and help the team be more successful with directional punting instead of just straight forward punting."

Rastetter said he hopes to study business management in college with the goal of managing farms.


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