For Monday morning recruiting news (there was one more), see http://marcmwm.wordpress.com/2009/01/26/monday-morning-recruiting-update/
Matt Murphy drove to Iowa City this weekend with a grayshirt offer from the University of Iowa.
It’s legit, but it doesn’t offer the instant gratification that a full, sign-on-the-dotted-line offer that becomes binding Feb. 4 gives a recruit.
Murphy left Iowa City with one of those and quickly jumped on it.
“I visited with coach (Kirk) Ferentz during breakfast at his house and it was the same old talk,” said Murphy, a 6-foot-6, 240-pounder from Clinton High School. “Then, about midway through the conversation, he offered a scholarship. It was shocking. I didn’t see it coming.”
Ferentz and the Iowa staff made a big push this weekend, the second-to-last before signing day. The Hawkeyes picked up four commitments — Murphy, West Des Moines Valley tight end Conor Boffeli, Ohio athlete Micah Hyde and Illinois quarterback Dakota Getz, who was recruited by Iowa to play tight end.
Iowa now has 16 commitments. Ferentz has said Iowa’s ’09 class will be in the mid- to high-teens, so it’s got to be getting close. Former Iowa City Regina linebacker Jake Reisen, a grayshirt commitment last year, comes under scholarship this semester and, technically, pushes this number to 17.
Hyde, a 6-1, 170-pound athlete from Fostoria (Ohio) High School, also committed to Iowa after receiving an offer just this weekend. Getz, a 6-4, 210-pounder who’ll play tight end at Iowa, also received his offer this weekend.
Murphy, who also received offers from Iowa State and Northern Iowa, said he’ll likely end up an offensive lineman for the Hawkeyes, but he’ll also take a look at tight end and defensive line.
“This was completely unexpected,” Murphy said. “When the (football) season started, I was pretty sure I was looking at walking on, but at the end, I thought something could happen. It happened today.”
Hyde was an extremely versatile performer at Fostoria. He played quarterback, defensive back, kicker, punter and returned kicks and punts.
The first-team all-Ohio quarterback in Division IV, threw for 2,336 yards and 23 touchdowns and rushed for 1,253 in the 2008 regular season. He helped the Redmen win a share of the Northern Ohio League title and claim their first playoff victory since 1996.
On Saturday, Hyde was selected to play for the Ohio team in the annual Big 33 all-star game against Pennsylvania on June 20. Hyde has a brother, Marcus, who plays defensive back at Michigan State.
Hyde has offers from a host of Mid-American Conference schools, including Ball State, Central Michigan, Miami (Ohio), Toledo, and Bowling Green.
HawkeyeNation.com and IowaPreps.com reported Sunday evening that Boffeli also committed to the Hawkeyes. Boffeli committed to Iowa State this summer, before coach Gene Chizik left for Auburn.
Getz, who said he’ll learn the tight end position at Iowa, is the third central Illinois prep to pick the Hawkeyes in the last two seasons. He joins tight end Brad Herman (Metamora) and quarterback John Wienke, whose school, Tuscola, is from the same conference as Getz’s.
“It’s nice that those guys are here, too,” said Getz, who was going to accept an offer from Western Illinois. “But I know that how much work I put in will determine my success. I have to work to get to see playing time, I know that.”
Murphy said he thought at least two others not mentioned here either committed or received offers.
One was Stephane Ngoumou, a 6-4, 195-pound wide receiver from Maryland. The other guy was a linebacker/running back type he thought. No idea on that one.
This flurry tells me that Ferentz and staff want a darned good idea of the shape of this class going into the final weekend. Iowa still has some big offers out there. It could also come up with a Mike Elgin/Brandon Myers/Allen Reisner guy, a last offer to an Iowa kid that seems crazy at the time but makes perfect sense three years from now.
But you could say that for a lot of commits Iowa already has in this class.
I know this class won’t come in with a whole lot of “stars,” but that’s the formula. Iowa goes for the hungry workaholic plugger whose upside ranges from Dallas Clark/Bob Sanders to Brian Ferentz to Brandon Myers. It’s worked more often than it hasn’t.
Historically under Ferentz, this final weekend has been more of an organizer for walk-ons. But there are a few bigger names who still hold offers from Iowa. I think, with Reiser, Iowa has one more scholarship but has the option to oversign by three.
Save one, two or maybe three, this could also be it. Remember, kicker Daniel Murray doesn’t have a scholarship. He’d be No. 1 on my list. There could also be another opening, with Shonn Greene and Jake Christensen already opening up a few.
If you count Boffeli as an O-lineman, Iowa picked up four. That was the biggest need, with the ’05 group going into its senior season.
Micah Hyde video from YouTube: