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Pat Harty: Near misses common in recruiting race

[ 0 ] January 6, 2014 |

Unless you’re Alabama coach Nick Saban, recruiting is sort of like playing baseball in that you swing and miss a lot.

It’s just the nature of the beast.

Kirk Ferentz has landed hundreds of recruits during his 15 seasons as the Iowa football coach, but he’s missed out on even more, including three of significance this past weekend.

Trevon Young stuck with his decision to attend Louisville even though Charlie Strong resigned as the Louisville coach this past weekend to accept the same job at Texas. (Register photo)

Trevon Young stuck with his decision to attend Louisville even though Charlie Strong resigned as the Louisville coach this past weekend to accept the same job at Texas. (Register photo)

Four-star receiver Adonis Jennings, who is from Sicklerville, N.J., announced his verbal commitment to Pittsburgh on Sunday while participating in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl. The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Jennings picked Pittsburgh over Iowa, Arkansas and Rutgers, where he previously was committed.

His commitment came one day after four-star offensive lineman Brian Wallace announced his commitment to Arkansas. The 6-foot-6, 305-pound Wallace, who is from St. Louis, picked Arkansas over Iowa, Missouri and Alabama, showing that even Saban strikes out every now and then.

Wallace made his announcement on Saturday while participating in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas.

Iowa’s third near-miss was defensive end Trevon Young, who stuck with his decision to attend Louisville even though Charlie Strong resigned as the Louisville coach this past weekend to accept the same job at Texas.

Young, a native of Des Moines, previously signed with Iowa, but his scholarship was pulled after he had two brushes with the law. Young played his freshman season at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs, earning all-American accolades this past fall.

Iowa made another scholarship offer to Young, only to come up short this time.

“I just decided that it was my plan to come here first,” Young said of Louisville to The Des Moines Register shortly after the news broke that Strong was leaving for Texas. “It wasn’t totally because of Coach Strong. There’s a lot of other reasons why I chose Louisville.”

Losing the aforementioned three players leaves Iowa with at least 18 committed to the 2014 recruiting class, all of whom are high school seniors. A typical Iowa recruiting class has about 20 to 25 prospects.

The national signing period for football will start Feb. 5. A verbal commitment isn’t official until a recruit signs a national letter of intent.

BIG TEN RANKINGS: “The rich getting richer” typically describes the Big Ten football recruiting rankings, with this year as no exception.

Ohio State’s class is ranked the highest among Big Ten teams by Scout.com at No. 5 nationally. Wisconsin has the second highest ranked class in the Big Ten, but drops all the way to 18th nationally. Michigan is third in the conference and 20th nationally, followed by Michigan State at No. 29, Nebraska at No. 37 and Iowa and No. 41.

Alabama’s 2014 recruiting class, which includes Cedar Falls four-star offensive lineman and former Iowa commit Ross Pierschbacher, is ranked first nationally by Scout.com followed by Tennessee, Notre Dame and Florida State.

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Category: Iowa Hawkeyes Football

About Pat Harty: Columnist Pat Harty has been covering the Iowa Hawkeyes for the Press-Citizen since 1991. Originally from Des Moines, he currently writes columns and covers Hawkeye men's basketball for Hawk Central. View author profile.

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