Hawkeyes Targeting Cedar Falls Running Back

"Taylor has a great burst and excellent quickness," said head coach Pat Mitchell. "He is a tough runner with an extra gear to get past defenders. Most importantly, he is very coachable and is one of the highest character kids I've had the chance to coach." Learn more about one of Iowa's top preps in the Class of 2006....

Those are high comments from Cedar Falls head coach Pat Mitchell, who has been around his fair share of high school football players.

Taylor Brookins is not a name that was presented by many earlier this winter as a junior to keep an eye on. Not only was that an oversight, but Brookins is very much in contention for honors as the state's top prospect.

"I feel like I'm capable of playing running back on the division one level," said Brookins. "I know there are bigger and stronger guys out there than me right now, but I can work to get there with them. I can hang with the big boys."

That is great confidence coming from a back located in a state that is not well known for producing stars at the position.

The Iowa Hawkeyes signed a surplus of running backs in 2005, and it is unknown if they will recruit one in the Class of 2006 (I'm projecting Munir Prince as a cornerback).

If Iowa does plan to heavily recruit a running back, I don't expect any rushed decisions to be made.

"Iowa told me they had been looking at my film, and really liked me. They said they were definitely interested, but for now, just wanted me to keep working hard on improving even more next fall. They told me they would like for me to come to their camp this summer," stated Brookins.

With more national prestige than in any other era of Hawkeye football, Iowa's recruiting pool is bigger than just five years ago when Brookins might already have received an offer from the Hawkeyes. But that does not mean Brookins is not talented, nor does it mean that Iowa is not very interested in him.

"Iowa is the only school to show me real interest to this point," added Brookins, who rushed for 1473 yards and 19 touchdowns on 238 carries this past fall. "My visit there last weekend went well, and I really like how much effort they put into their program. They are rewarded from the hard work, and they proudly sell their program."

Brookins recently received a camp brochure from Iowa State, but has yet to receive any regular mail from the Cyclones.

Brookins said that even if Iowa would have offered him last weekend he would still keep his options open.

"I don't have any bias towards any school and right now I want to see what options come my way," said Brookins.

Lastly, it was only a few shorts years ago that Cedar Falls produced a promisin running back in Terrence Freeney. Coach Mitchell commented on the similiarites and differences of the two.

"Taylor is straight ahead faster than Terrence. Terrence was probably a bit more shifty, but they are both extremely tough runners who know how to get the next yard. I firmly believe that Taylor Brookins is going to receive division one offers," stated Mitchell.

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