Iowa Showing Interest in West Virginia Big

Iowa holds one remaining open scholarship in the 2015 recruiting class. That ride could go to a big man with the Hawkeyes front court being upperclassmen heavy. One potential fit for that scholarship is West Virginia post player Levi Cook. He talked with Hawkeye Insider about his interest in the Big Ten school and where he stands with it.

Iowa would like to add a big man in the late signing period. Levi Cook certainly meets that description. At 6-foot-10, 290 pounds, the West Virginian casts a large shadow, to say the least.

Cook verbally committed to home state West Virginia in September of 2012 when he was a high school sophomore. Two years later, almost to the day, he re-opened his recruitment.

"Recruiting was going kind of slow at first. Nobody took my de-commitment to West Virginia serious. Now that they realized I was serious about it, things have started to pick up and the offers started to roll in," Cook said.

Cooks reports scholarship offers from Pittsburgh, Marshall, Virginia Tech, East Tennessee State and Appalachian State. He said he's talking with Hawkeye Assistant Andrew Francis on a consistent basis.

"I really like (Francis). He seems really cool. They seem to be real interested in me and I'd be real interested to go up there and check it out," Cook said. "We've talked about a visit but right now I'm focusing on this season and putting that first. I think (an Iowa offer is) coming. Hopefully it's coming. I feel like they'll offer soon."

Cook said Francis called him Sunday night.

"He said he's going to make sure me and the head coach (Fran McCaffery) talk on the phone soon together," Cook said.

Cook, who plays at famed Huntington (WV) Prep, kept the Mountaineers in the picture after he de-committed. That's changed.

"We don't talk anymore. They're not recruiting me," he said.

Cook has switched his focus to the schools which are interested in him. He began familiarizing himself with the Hawkeyes.

"I never really thought about Iowa until they started recruiting me and I just started Googling stuff. I like everything I've found out so far," he said. "I know that Iowa is far away from West Virginia and I know they're the Hawkeyes. I know they're in the Big Ten. That's definitely a big-name conference."

Iowa Senior Center Gabe Olaseni will use up his eligibility this winter. Starting five-man Adam Woodbury is a junior. It make sense that the Hawkeyes add a big man with their one remaining 2015 open scholarship.

"I'm big and powerful and try to do whatever I need to do to help my team win," Cook said. "I can give off energy when I want to. I've got a good little mid-range jumper. I can play low-post defense."

After what went down with his West Virginia relationship, Cook is taking his recruitment slow. And he knows the qualities he'd like to see in a school he chooses.

"Loyalty is very big to me," he said. "I want a place that shows me love and shows they can be loyal, that they actually care about their players. I'm interested to see how they treat their alumni players."

Cook said he likes working with children and that could steer him towards an education major in college.

South Carolina is expected to bring Cook in on a visit in two weeks. He said he'll probably take the rest of his trips after his season. He hopes to make a final decision around signing day (April 15), he said.

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