Jeffrey Becker/USA Today

Iowa Football Scholarship Chart Update: 1/16/17

Find out what the scholarship numbers look right now for Iowa.

TOTAL= 66/85

 

QUARTERBACK (3)

Jr - Tyler Wiegers
Soph - Drew Cook, Nate Stanley

I don't see any additional attrition coming from this spot actually. I thought there might be at one point but I think all is calm on that front. They'll add Mansell in February and this position group is right on schedule according to what they need.

RUNNING BACK (5)

Sr - Derrick Mitchell, Akrum Wadley
Jr - Marcel Joly
Soph - Toks Akinribade
RS Frosh - Toren Young

They're probably going to add two more running backs in February giving them seven heading into the Spring. That shows there might be attrition here but it isn't guaranteed. They'll also lose two more seniors at the position before the next signing day so it isn't out of the question that they could sign another two backs a year from now. 

FULLBACK (1)

Soph - Brady Ross

Iowa hasn't made a habit of giving scholarships to fullbacks recently but Brady Ross was given one and it is well deserved.

WIDE RECEIVER (6)

Sr - Matt VandeBerg, Jonathan Parker
Jr - Jerminic Smith, Adrian Falconer
Soph - Ryan Boyle, Devonte Young

I'm not so sure Jay Scheel's career ending because of injury will be the last of the attrition at this spot, actually, without naming names. That's why they definitely need a third wideout to sign in February and perhaps a fourth. That's in addition to adding junior college receiver Nick Easley as a walk-on for the next season. They'll lose two more again after the 2017 season, Depending on how many they are able to sign in the 2017 class, the 2018 class might have to be heavy at receiver, too. 

TIGHT END (5)

Sr - Jon Wisnieski
Soph - Nate Vejvoda, Noah Fant
RS Frosh - T.J. Hockenson, Shaun Beyer

The numbers at this position might not be final. They also could be adding Jacob Coons to the mix in the Fall depending on if he begins at tight end or linebacker. Kurt Rafdal is a target in the final stretch as well. The position is in a good spot though and in good hands. They may not need to sign one in the 2018 class. 

OFFENSIVE TACKLE (4)

Sr - Ike Boettger, Boone Myers
Soph - Levi Paulsen
RS Frosh - Alaric Jackson

Brett Waechter having to leave football hurts. I think they envisioned he and Alaric Jackson as the bookend tackles beginning in 2018. I think part of it is because they liked both quite a bit but also because they prefer the Paulsens inside. But in 2018 they're going to start two brand new tackles in all likelihood, assuming Levi doesn't start at right tackle in 2017 with Boettger at left guard. One of those tackles in 2018 will be Alaric Jackson. The other one is up for grabs. But there's not a lot of tackle bodies left when Myers and Boettger leave. That's why Wirfs and Kallenberger were recruited this year. They both will redshirt but could play soon after. 

OFFENSIVE GUARD (5)

Sr - Sean Welsh
Jr - Keegan Render, Ross Reynolds
Soph - Landan Paulsen
RS Frosh - Cole Banwart

There's no guards in the current recruiting class. That means when Welsh graduates after the 2017 season, they'll only have four. Expect the interior of the offensive line to get quite a bit of emphasis in the 2018 recruiting class. It's still a good group. They like Render and Reynolds. Paulsen is taking steps forward. Banwart is still developing. They'll need to fill out the roster on the interior in the 2018 cycle, though. 

CENTER (3)

Jr - James Daniels, Lucas LeGrand
RS Frosh - Spencer Williams

Most teams do not have three guys designated to just the center position but Iowa does and you can get away with it when you have 85 scholarships at your disposal. They're all great kids and pretty good players too so I don't see a problem with it. They don't need one in the 2018 class. There's more attrition to come before the spring in all likelihood but there's not any real candidates on the offensive line that fit the description. 

DEFENSIVE END (7)

Jr - Matt Nelson, Parker Hesse
Soph - Garret Jansen, Anthony Nelson
RS Frosh - Romeo McKnight, Brandon Simon, Chauncey Golston

This is a deep, deep position right now and it's full of guys that can all play and they can all play well and they can all play right now. There's going to be a lot of bodies fighting for playing time here and that's not even counting A.J. Epenesa who arrives in the Fall. Because there's so many contributors and probably not enough snaps, sometimes this is a case where someone could elect to leave after the Spring or in the Fall to find a place where there is a better path to the field. Either way, solid group and a deep group. It probably won't receive a ton of emphasis in the 2018 cycle either because nobody from this position is set to graduate, either. 

DEFENSIVE TACKLE (6)

Sr - Nathan Bazata
Soph - Michael Slater, Jacob Newborg, Brady Reiff, Cedrick Lattimore
RS Frosh - Austin Schulte

There's a lot of unknowns at this spot after Nathan Bazata. I think Lattimore will be very good but can he be good enough right away? Brady Reiff is viewed as a rotation guy so he needs to bulk up and they feel confident that he will. This is a questionable position right now. Schulte is still recovering from the high school knee injury. Newborg just switched positions. Slater has been injured a lot. The quantity of guys isn't any lower though. They lose Ekakitie and Jaleel Johnson but they moved Reiff inside and switched Newborg over to the defensive side giving them six scholarship defensive tackles just like they had a year ago. Plus, I think they'll have Coy Kirkpatrick play inside. This is why another defensive tackle would make sense in this class, but it probably makes a little more sense to grab a couple in 2018 than anything. 

One interesting note is that there is now four defensive tackles in the same graduating class with Slater, Newborg, Reiff, and Lattimore now all being sophomores. That's not normal and typically you avoid situations like that so you don't lose more than half of the players at a position at once to graduation. 

OUTSIDE LINEBACKER (7)

Sr - Ben Niemann, Bo Bower
Jr - Aaron Mends, Jack Hockaday
Soph - Amani Jones, Kristian Welch
RS Frosh - Nick Niemann

It's crazy how much the staff and his teammates praise Jack Hockaday's play but he'll be entering his junior season this year and still hasn't been able to become a full-time starter. Does he push Bo Bower for more snaps? I think he could. But it's just an unlucky set of circumstances for him to where he was just blocked on the depth chart for the first three years of his eligibility. That's why players do look at depth charts during their recruitment and why fans are sometimes out of line when they say they aren't team players because of that. They can still be a team player and want to start for more than one or two years. That's not to say that Hockaday is upset at all because I have no information on that at all and would imagine that he's not. But that shows why athletes always need to be thorough in their recruiting process.

With that being said, this is a spot with some depth because of that. Amani Jones is said to have a bright future as well. I know he got some special teams work but it's surprising that Welch didn't take a redshirt year. There's enough bodies here that I understand why linebacker hasn't been a huge emphasis in the 2017 recruiting class outside of Thomas Johnston. With three departures after next season, it certainly will be in the 2018 recruiting class. 

INSIDE LINEBACKER (4)

Sr - Josey Jewell
Soph - Angelo Garbutt
RS Frosh - Barrington Wade, Kyle Taylor

The big question will be what linebacker spot Jack Hockaday takes when Jewell, Bower, and Niemann graduate. That's an interesting discussion. He can play all three and from all accounts, does well at pretty much all three. He's definitely the next guy up after Bower, and they went to Hockaday when Jewell was ejected, too. If they like Garbutt enough or one of the other two, Hockaday can play one of the outside spots. But if they'd like Aaron Mends or Amani Jones on the field, Hockaday can play inside. That will be the question for next offseason. 

CORNERBACK (4)

Jr - Josh Jackson
Soph - Michael Ojemudia, Manny Rugamba
RS Frosh - Cedric Boswell

As we have mentioned for several months, the secondary is thin and they are addressing that through recruiting this cycle. They have four defensive backs committed and they did have five. They're still chasing others as well. They swung and missed with Scotty Nelson and have offered a few more since. They'll likely sign two or three cornerbacks in February giving them six or seven on the roster with none set to graduate after the season. And because Joshua Turner or Camron Harrell could end up at safety, they'll likely add another corner in the 2018 class but this year's cycle should help fix the numbers. They just will be very, very young. 

SAFETY (4)

Sr - Miles Taylor
Jr - Brandon Snyder
Soph - Amani Hooker
True Frosh - Noah Clayberg

The safety position is actually in a bit more dire need of a jolt as you can see. Djimon Colbert is definitely a safety. Harrell or Turner might be. But even if they are, they only have three current safeties on campus right now that will be here in a year and one hasn't even put on pads for an Iowa football game yet. That's probably why Turner or Harrell could begin as safeties or why they could still add another safety before signing day. Either way it's likely a position that will have to use the 2018 class to get the numbers right again. 

KICKER (1)

Jr - Mick Ellis

I'll avoid any drama or tough situations here but this isn't a normal scholarship situation. Keith Duncan will be on scholarship before he graduates and it's tough to know how soon that will be. 

PUNTER (0)

None

Whoever the starting punter is for the 2017 season will be put on scholarship. That could be a recruit they're chasing between now and Signing Day or it could be Colten Rastetter. Time will tell.

LONG SNAPPER (1)

Sr - Tyler Kluver

They'll have to think about who the next long snapper will be with Kluver entering his final season. It's not out of the question that it may be Ron Coluzzi's little brother Marshall Coluzzi from Naperville, Illinois. He's a 2017 recruit and could very well walk on at Iowa. 

SUMMARY

As shown above, Iowa has 19 free scholarships right now which means they definitely can sign at least 19 players on February 1 and probably will sign more than that. But they'll also want to leave one vacated for their punter unless they award a scholarship to a 2017 recruit. And with more attrition expected, Kirk Ferentz's statement of being able to sign 20-22 on February 1 makes a lot of sense and is exactly what the roster would demand and indicate. 


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