Several years ago, Iowa began working the Atlanta area for recruits. The southern city has been ripe with talent and direct flights from there to Cedar Rapids.
The Hawkeyes arrived cold, trying to build relationships in SEC country, which was no small task. They went from receiving cursory looks from prospects to now getting them on campus. Still, they've not landed one.
The push continues into the 2016 Class. These players are used to seeing Iowa assistant LeVar Woods come through their schools. Perhaps this is the cycle when the Hawkeyes hit pay dirt.
Cedar Grove (Ellenwood, GA) High Linebacker Elysee Mbem-Bosse has appreciated getting to know Woods. He reported a Hawkeye offer and solid interest in the school.
"I would say we have a good relationship. He just seems like a down-to-earth and honest person," the 6-foot-3, 228-pounder said.
Woods played linebacker at Iowa and in the NFL. He was moved to tight end coach earlier this month.
"He said that he likes how I play downhill and make plays. He likes my aggressiveness," Mbem-Bosse said.
Mbem-Bosse said he's looking for a time to make a visit to Iowa. He's trying to see schools closer to him first.
Georgia played host to its in-state prospect this last weekend.
"I would say it went great. I had to leave early with one of my teammates because he had to attend a baseball game. When I was leaving, the coaches said they would be in contact with me and they wanted me to come back for a spring practice," he said.
Mbem-Bosse said Iowa, Syracuse, Tennessee, Wake Forest, Ole Miss, North Carolina, Duke, and Georgia State have offered him scholarships. He visited Wake and was scheduled to be at Auburn this coming weekend and Alabama the week after that.
"They're very interested. They just want to see me in person. The defensive coordinator (Kirby Smart) said they like me," Mbem-Bosse said.
Mbem-Bosse said he's looking to major in engineering.
"Academics are the most important thing because you won't always be able to play football. You need to have a reliable plan for the rest of your life. What you do after football is what's most important," he said.
Mbem-Bosse said he has no timetable for his decision. He's attacking the process deliberately.
"To be honest, the place that I will be choosing will be the place that feels just like home to me. Location won't really matter as long as I'm comfortable," he said.