Recruiting Update: 2010 OT James Kohler

The Bootleg's Andy Drukarev checks in with James Kohler, one of the top 2010 targets for the Cardinal at the always critical offensive tackle position. Young Kohler must have the Stanford staff salivating with his big frame and impressive athleticism. Fresh off a visit to the Farm with his father, Kohler shares where Stanford stands in his mind, among a host of interested programs in the midwest.

OL James Kohler
Recruiting Update: 2010 OT James Kohler

Keeping with the theme of heavily recruiting some of the nation's most athletic offensive lineman, your Stanford Cardinal have been hard at work trying to lure one of the midwest's premier big men to Palo Alto. 6'7 ½, 240-pound tackle James Kohler might not have the bulk to step on a Pac-10 field tomorrow, but he has the frame and athleticism to be a very successful tackle at the collegiate level over time. Kohler is an outstanding baseball player as well. Currently a dominating pitcher for the Ames High "Little Cyclones", the 6'7" junior also takes people deep from the batter's box.


Last weekend, the Ames HS, (Ames IA) star, whose recruitment is being spearheaded by Stanford assistant coach Tim Drevno, made a trip up to Palo Alto with his father to get a taste of the Cardinal football experience. He talked about that visit with TheBootleg in an exclusive interview conducted earlier today.


"I mean, we saw it all," Kohler said. "We started by sitting down and meeting with all the coaches. It was the first time I had ever met most of them so I got to know them. Then we went and met with a few professors, I think a mechanical engineering and then another engineering professor. Then we went on a campus tour which was pretty impressive. The next day we went on a facilities tour where we went over to the football stadium and went up to the top level there and looked (down on) Palo Alto."


Kohler stayed overnight on the Stanford campus in the dorm room of 2009 QB recruit Josh Nunes.


"I stayed in his dorm and he seemed like a really nice person - he was not upset that he got chosen to have me stay in his room with him," Kohler joked. "He was very welcoming and it was a good experience."


Overall, Kohler's trip to Stanford compared favorably with other unofficial visits he has taken to schools like Iowa State, Iowa, Kansas State, and Northwestern.


"The Stanford visit was a lot longer for one thing so I got to see a lot more of the school than on like a half-day junior day visit I've gone on in the past," Kohler said. "(Stanford head coach Jim) Harbaugh was with us pretty much the whole time we were there which was very different than other visits I've been on where maybe you meet with them for 10 or 15 minutes throughout the day. It was more personal at Stanford because it was only me there. It wasn't a group of recruits so it was quite a bit different "


After getting the chance to visit Stanford, Kohler said that the Cardinal is one of the four schools that are starting to stand out for him.


"Well, definitely Stanford," Kohler said. "The visit was pretty incredible and then the fact that I'm looking for a really good academic school as well as a good football program and Stanford really fits both of those, so puts it up there in the top along with Northwestern, Iowa State, and Kansas, maybe."


Still, Kohler said that he has yet to eliminate any of the seven colleges that have extended him scholarship offers.


"I'm looking to find that program that first of all is a good academic school and also has a good football program," Kohler said. "Most important I have to feel comfortable with the coaches and be able to see myself spending four or five years with them and being comfortable around them and not regretting the decision at all for the next five years."


Kohler currently holds offers from Missouri, Iowa, Northwestern, Kansas, Kansas State, and Iowa State in addition to Stanford. All of those schools are recruiting Kohler to play the tackle position.


"They just say they like my athleticism," Kohler said. "I also play baseball and basketball and I'm mobile – I'm not the typical offensive lineman of the past who's just kind of a big guy that doesn't really get around very much. I'm hopefully going to be able to move around a bit."


Kohler originally intended to wait until sometime in his football season to thoroughly explore all of his college options before making a decision, but is now thinking about committing sooner.


"We originally were thinking probably sometime next fall, maybe after the football season at the latest or during the football season but we're not sure at this point," Kohler said. "We're going to have to talk about it and reevaluate it and maybe bump it ahead a little bit to figure it out sooner - we're not sure."


If he does decide to commit early to Stanford, Kohler probably won't likely have to fret too much about having a Plan-B school in the event he does not pass through the school's selective admissions process. A possible future engineering or medicine major, Kohler has held a stellar 4.0 GPA throughout high school and scored a whopping 32 on the ACT.


Kohler, who said he hopes to increase his weight to the 285-290 range after taking a redshirt year in college, has yet to be evaluated by but is considered a three-star lineman by a competing recruiting service. The Bootleg feels he is among the best options on our ever-evolving 2009 board. 



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