Iowa Lands Nation's Top Defensive End in the 2017 Class

Iowa lands the top defensive end in the country for the 2017 class.

Iowa has landed their 'massive get' for the 2017 class already as four-star A.J. Epenesa of Edwardsville, Illinois has already announced his commitment to the Hawkeyes. Epenesa is an Iowa legacy, with his father 'Eppy' having played his college football in Iowa City as well.

This is a huge pick-up for Kirk Ferentz and company as Epenesa is one of the best in the country for his class. He's currently listed by Scout as the 16th best player in the 2017 class overall, and the top player overall at his position for his recruiting class.

The blue-chipper is already all of 6-foot-5 and 245 pounds. He's a fantastic edge-rusher at this stage of his development but he has the frame to add a ton of weight and strong to also be able to play the strong-side defensive end spot and be potent against the run as well.

Epenesa used twitter to announced his verbal pledge to Iowa.

"This week me and my family have made the biggest decision of my life. It has been a long and hard road, but this morning my family and I have come together with all of the coaches and told them that I am committing ot the University of Iowa."

The nation's top defensive end continued with some more details about his decision to be a Hawkeye.

"We are so excited as a family. I want to give all of the thanks to God for blessing me and keeping me safe all of this time. Thank you to everyone who has helped me up to this point, it hasn't been easy. But all of the hard work definitely pays off! It's a great day to be a Hawkeye! Go Hawks!", Epenesa shared.

The Hawkeyes are off to a fast start in 2017. Epenesa is the first of five pledges to be from out-of-state. The first four were four-star offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs of Mount Vernon, defensive tackle Juan Harris of North Fayette, tight end Jacob Coons of Solon, and defensive lineman Coy Kirkpatrick of Madrid.

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