Iowa Commit Alvis Remains Firm

Logan-Magnolia's Dominic Alvis gave Iowa a verbal commitment recently, of the Grayshirt variety. That means Alvis won't be on scholarship next fall, paying his own way, but will be a member of the Class of 2010. Iowa State recently made a coaching change and has been showing interest in Alvis. HN caught up with the defensive end prospect and has the latest on his recruitment.

Having followed Iowa football recruiting for the past decade, I have had the opportunity to speak with hundreds of high school junior and senior football players.  The vast majority of those conversations have been pleasant, but most of them have also been brief exchanges.


I am not criticizing here; when I was 17 or 18, I probably wouldn't have been the most engaging interview subject, either.


That's why when a player comes along on the other end of the phone line like Iowa Grayshirt commitment Dominic Alvis of Logan (Magnolia), Iowa, it's very refreshing.


To say that Alvis was well spoken and focused would be an understatement. 


Alvis began our conversation by confirming that he is still solidly committed to Iowa as a Grayshirt commitment. 


To the uninitiated, a Grayshirt commitment is like putting an extra fish into the live well.  Alvis is a senior in high school, but he will pay his own way to come to Iowa next fall.  After one semester of paying his own way, he will be placed on scholarship and will officially listed in Iowa's recruiting Class of 2010, if all goes to plan.


One of Iowa's more recent Grayshirt commitments was offensive lineman Julian Vandervelde, but he wound up receiving a scholarship that had opened up, during his first fall in Iowa City.


The term ‘Grayshirt' was new to Alvis, just as it might be new to some of you.


"No, I really wasn't familiar with that term," Alvis said.  "When Kirk Ferentz explained it to me, that was the first I had heard it.  They had been thinking about that month's beforehand.  But they also told me there is the possibility that I could receive a scholarship next fall."


"When you think about it, the Grayshirt route is a pretty good deal, actually.  Five and a half years on scholarship and a chance for me to pursue my degree even further.  If you look at it that way, it's a good deal."


When you intend to major in Biology and move on to Dentistry school, that's quite a bit of added value in a full ride scenario.  There are just a few minor drawbacks, in Alvis' eyes.


"I would like the scholarship, because it would be easier to explain to my friends and family that Iowa has offered me," Alvis said, jokingly.


Since telling Iowa he would be coming there as a Grayshirt, the Iowa State Cyclones have changed coaches.  Gene Chizik has moved on to Auburn, and Ankeny native Paul Rhoads is now the head man in Ames.


While Chizik mostly ignored instate talent, to the point of avoiding several players from the state of Iowa, Rhoads (like Kirk Ferentz) understands that his program will have to start at home; while a member of Pittsburgh coaching staff, Rhoads persuaded his head coach to offer Andy Brodell, which was Brodell's lone BCS conference offer outside of the state.


Rhoads has been in contact with Alvis.


"I am still committed to Iowa.  Iowa State has not offered me a scholarship.  They have told me they are in the process of reviewing my film.  They are way behind, and still making up ground." Alvis said.


"I met with Coach Rhoads in his office on an unofficial visit.  He came across as energetic and outgoing, although he was a little fatigued from playing catch up on the job.  He still displayed a lot of competitive undertone to what he was talking about.  He has his sights set high, which they should be.  He is very goal oriented and he is a great person."


While Iowa State is beginning to make a push in Alvis' direction, it appears as though it will take a lot to change his mind, and commitment, from Iowa.


"I have to tell you, an offer from Iowa is a great thing.  I love it.  The only thing that could have changed my mind was if Coach Ferentz would have gone to the NFL.  But he isn't going anywhere.  You always have to keep your options open, but being a Hawkeye would be the best thing."


Alvis said he hadn't spoken with Ferentz about the ‘NFL' since the Outback Bowl, but he feels comfortable with that topic just being a lot of talk. 


"I haven't spoken with (Ferentz) directly; I have spoken with Reese Morgan and he said that (Ferentz) is not going to the NFL.  He said the media blows that all up, and that Kirk isn't going anywhere."

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