HTO.com caught up with a very close influence on LB Tom Busch last evening. That would happen to be his 20 year old brother, Mike, who also was a star football player at Park Senior High School in Cottage Grove. In fact, Mike will be transferring from Mankato State to the University of Minnesota this fall to be closer to his brother.
"I have a very close relationship with my brother as we share a lot of the same thoughts and personalities," Mike Busch stated to HTO.com. "I've really helped Tom with recruiting and training. I was once a hopeful D1 prospect as a kicker/punter, but I had a knee go bad so it ended my dreams. I've had people ask if I'm living my dreams through Tom, but that is not the case. I just want to make sure my brother makes it with the best informed decision."
Tom, a 5'11 230, hard hitting LB is one of the top linebackers in the Midwest. Tom attended camps at Iowa and Iowa State where he had great performances at both leaving marks with his tenacious hits.
"Coach (Norm) Parker told us that Tom has the potential to be a Bob Sanders type player," Mike said. "Certainly, Tom is not at that level yet, but they play the game similar with their hitting styles. Both can raise the level of play with their teammates by making a huge hit. Tom got the chance to speak to Bob at camp, and Bob had a lot of great things to say about Iowa."
Tom currently has four offers from Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota, and California. Tom is also receiving strong interest from Nebraska, Northwestern, Stanford, Kansas State, and Illinois. While the Hawks may have the early edge, Tom will wait to make his decision after the season by making official visits.
"Tom wants to make sure every team knows they have an even chance right now. Iowa has been very impressive and the attitude of every phase of their program has been different from other schools, but all the teams will still have a chance to impress Tom this fall. He will wait until after the season to make his decision."
As stated in the opening paragraph, Tom is not the prototypical division one linebacker with his size. However, when viewing tape of Tom it is not hard to see why he is climbing the LB charts.
"Your first time looking at Tom, seeing his face and thick neck will let you know he is a tough nosed guy. He is short at 5'11, but has a great frame of muscle at 230. We are working on his speed and agility all the time. He started to run sideline to sideline last year, and I think he'll only continue to get better at that phase as he grows."
While Tom may or may not end up a Hawkeye, the whole Busch family has not seen any negatives associated with the Hawkeye team in the early recruiting phase.
"Taking your first step into the football office, you can just tell the attitude of the program. From Coach Ferentz to Coach Doyle, they stress football and have a desire to be a great program. I know my father, Tom, and I all share those same feelings. They work so hard in recruiting a player. It makes you think of just how much they put into developing you as a player and how well they treat their players."
As sure of the fact that the Hawkeyes will be making big hits on the field this fall, the same guarantee can be said about Tom Busch. Norm Parker stresses tough football players on his defense, and in this recruiting season there may be no player that is tougher than LB Tom Busch.