Derek's Take: Teams always look to take at least one quarterback and that will be no different in this class despite the fact that there will be none graduating from this spot. They'll grab one. At one time I thought they may be in the discussion for Devin Leary but I think they slipped there while they didn't have a quarterbacks coach or anyone really recruiting the northeast part of the country. Ken O'Keefe should fill that void moving forward but I think that gap caused them to fall behind too much for him. The best chances likely lie with Kansas signal caller Jace Ruder who is committed to Tulsa.
Although I do feel there's a chance the quarterback of this class has yet to be offered and comes from someone not currently on the board or radar. This time last year we thought Kameron Fields might be Iowa's quarterback of the class and now he's going to college to play baseball.
Great Chance: N/A
In The Mix: Devin Black, Jace Ruder
Not Likely: Kevin Doyle, Artur Sitkowski, Cade Fortin, Quincy Patterson, Devin Leary
Derek's Take: Iowa only will lose Wadley after this year. That still leaves six backs since Noah Clayberg is beginning his career in the backfield as well but I wouldn't rule out possible attrition before or after the Fall.
I would say it makes sense to only take one back in this class but I don't see a scenario at all where they turn either Saybein Clark or Henry Geil away. They could land both. Geil is definitely a running back, and though they are recruiting Clark at least initially as a running back, I believe the in-state prospect could also play in the secondary. It turns out that they are also in good position with plenty of prospects in the defensive backfield as well, though.
Another note to make is that I actually believe Iowa is in better shape with Geil than they are Clark. I think Geil is Iowa's to lose but a Michigan State offer could shake things up. Clark on the other hand just indeed may be leaning elsewhere, specifically Iowa State.
Great Chance: Saybein Clark, Henry Geil
In The Mix: Elijah Collins, Jerome Ford
Not Likely: Lorenzo Lingard, Kirby Bennett, Ricky Slade, Markese Stepp, Jaelen Gill, Tavion Thomas
Derek's Take: They only lose VandeBerg but it's still in need of a talent infusion. They only have four scholarship wideouts right now before the four freshmen come in before the FallI. I think two is the right number for this position, at least. Three would give you ten scholarship receivers for the 2018 season which might be much especially accumulating seven altogether in back to back classes. I still wouldn't rule it out, though.
I think they sit the best with I'Shawn Stewart and Tyrone Tracy, though both are seen as slot guys at this point. Would they take two slot guys? The only slot guys that will be on the roster in the Fall not named Matt VandeBerg are indeed newcomers Max Cooper and Nick Easley. I think Tracy is in. Stewart has favored the Hawkeyes for a while, though other schools are pursuing him as a cornerback while Iowa likes him as a wideout. Samson Evans likes both the Hawkeyes and Minnesota, but hasn't ruled out playing at Northern Illinois so that he can be a quarterback. His brother is already in DeKalb and playing for the Huskies.
Could those be the three? Certainly, but they might just want two and then hope to land an outside guy like Daniel George or Cameron Brown. The chances for Brown are probably more likely than George.
Great Chance: I'Shawn Stewart, Samson Evans, Tyrone Tracy
In The Mix: Daniel George, Cameron Brown
Not Likely: Kamryn Babb, Drue Jackson, Jahan Dotson, Micah Jones, Meechi Harris
Derek's Take: There's a couple that haven't performed on the field just yet so there's a little unknown here. Wisnieski graduates. Because they added Coons here in the 2017 class, they could get away with not signing one. I think they take one if it's the right one. If they do add a tight end, he hasn't been offered yet. Some names to think about are in-state prospect Ben Subbert of Williamsburg, Anthony Torres of Indiana and Mike O'Laughlin of Illinois.
Great Chance: N/A
In The Mix:
Not Likely: L'Christian Smith, Josh Whyle, Luke Ford, Brenden Bates
Derek's Take: I have Wirfs as an interior lineman as of now but he could play tackle as well. Kallenberger is definitely a tackle. There's also still Levi Paulsen and Alaric Jackson but they do lose Boone Myers and Ike Boettger. There's a lot of bodies for the interior that will still be left as Sean Welsh will be the only one that graduates. They can be selective here and I think they can sign two and be okay, and best case scenario would be one tackle and one guard. Three is possible, though.
Some believe Downing is a tackle. I think he's more of an interior prospect. Jenkins is definitely on the interior. Those are the only two they have a shot with among the prospects they have offered. I do still believe Downing is leaning towards the Cyclones but he seems adamant about visiting Iowa once again before the Spring is up. As of now, he seems to visit Iowa State every week and that has to mean something. Most involved with this recruitment believe he plays his football in Ames.
In The Mix: Trevor Downing
Not Likely: Jack Carman, Carlos Vettorello, Will Farniok, Jalen Mayfield
Committed: Jeff Jenkins
Derek's Take: There's nine defensive ends that will be on the roster this Fall as it currently stands now in addition to six defensive tackles. The only one expected to depart is Nathan Bazata due to graduation. So how much space is there here? It can't be a lot. But the nature of the beast suggests there has to be some attrition coming. It's tough to keep these many guys happy. They absolutely need to add a couple defensive tackles at least. Defensive end is a different animal.
They're going to get Linderbaum for defensive tackle. They're pushing hard for Daniel Parker and John Waggoner at defensive end. I think they're in better shape with Parker but I also think they'd land Waggoner if today was decision day. Noah Shannon would likely pick the Hawkeyes today as well. They also just offered a legacy in Tate Wildeman of Colorado and were the first FBS offer over the weekend for Nebraska defensive tackle Bryson Williams. The numbers are going to make things very interesting at this spot.
Great Chance: John Waggoner, Noah Shannon, Daniel Parker, Tyler Linderbaum
In The Mix: Trevor Trout, Michael Thompson, Tate Wildeman, Bryson Williams
Not Likely: Thomas Booker, Malik Vann, Justin Ademilola, Jayson Ademilola, Masry Mapieu, Taron Vincent, Aeneas Hawkins, Malcolm Lamar, Alex Reigelsperger, Ronnie Perkins, Daniel Carson, Devin O'Rourke, Jamarcus Chatman, Leonard Taylor
Derek's Take: They do lose three linebackers in Jewell, Bower, and Niemann. But it's still pretty well-stocked because of the 2016 class. They'll have nine returning. They've added two outside guys already in Dillon Doyle and Mike Bruner and definitely need an inside guy. Doyle could eventually slide in but he's been told he's an outside guy at this stage.
McGrone and Square don't make the most sense since they're likely outside linebackers at the next level. But with Doyle being able to move inside, maybe they're still options. I do think Iowa has a better shot with Square than McGrone at this point. But that still has to play out a bit more. Square is looking at Michigan State and Wisconsin the most but the Spartans are going through a rough patch and the Badgers are filling up quick.
Adeoye would be the best case scenario because of his talent and his fit as an inside linebacker in Iowa's system. However, that's going to be a tough pull with all the national players involved for his recruitment. Of the midwest programs, Illinois is probably one the one with the best shot for Adeoye. Rosendo Louis is a new prospect on the radar and may be one to pay close attention to moving forward.
Great Chance: N/A
In The Mix: Cameron McGrone, DeAndre Square, Ayodele Adeoye, Rosendo Louis
Not Likely: Antwuan Johnson, Jack Sanborn, Rocky Shelton, James Miller
Committed: Mike Bruner, Dillon Doyle
Derek's Take: They just brought in quite the haul in the secondary in the 2017 class, specifically six guys if Creamer ends up on defense. Only one that is set to leave is Miles Taylor. I do think they could still add a couple corners and at least one safety. The Spring and Summer attrition will tell us a lot.
Right now they're in a spot where they could land all of Tyrik Henderson, Dallas Craddieth, Dashon Bussell and D.J. Johnson and that would be an impressive haul. That'd be three more cornerbacks and a safety. Johnson could be a safety making it two and two, though. But is Saybein Clark a defensive back as well and does he pick Iowa? There's a lot of moving parts, still.
Great Chance: Tyrik Henderson, Dallas Craddieth, Dashon Bussell, D.J. Johnson
In The Mix: Julius Brents, Davion Williams, Jayce Rogers, Maxwell Worship
Not Likely: Ken Montgomery, A.J. Lytton, Isheem Young, Atanza Vongor, Greg Newsome, Mario Goodrich, Reese Taylor, Michael Dowell, Delarrin Turner-Yell
When looking at the numbers, I think this could be a smaller class than what we saw in both the 2016 and 2017 classes. I think the number here probably tops off at around 17-18. How they distribute those numbers is still a bit up in the air at some point but there's no positions that need to be substantially emphasized in the class. Looking at the numbers position by position and it really only commands a little here and a little there for the most part.
The names listed are just the ones that have been offered so far, and there will undoubtedly be prospects that sign on in this class that have yet to be listed. There's only three commits in right now but I think they're about to go on a bit of a roll. I also believe that Iowa is hot on the recruiting trail right now even though it's not resulting in commitments just yet. It's coming. They're doing very well and should end up with another good group in 2018.
I actually think they might have to squeeze out a few kids at some point that they would typically take. There's more kids that are thinking they want in than I actually think they're going to have space for. But we'll see. Like mentioned above, there's a lot of moving parts yet.
I do think you see some action and some growing of the class throughout the Spring but nothing that is imminent. Because it is a class with a limited number of spots, I do see a scenario where most of the 17-18 slots get filled up by the end of summer. It could be a lot like the 2016 group in that way. But they'll leave 3-4 spots available for late adds after they are able to evaluate some senior film and find some late bloomers like Iowa always love to do. They place a lot of value in that and a lot of value in athletes that are multi-sport athletes. But also so they can figure out the numbers as well.
Here's a rough estimate of what the numbers could look like position by position.
QB - 1
RB - 1/2
WR - 2/3
TE - 0/1
OL - 2/3
DL - 3/4
LB - 2/3
DB - 3/4