An up-and-coming wrestling program in Arizona gave Brock Rathbun reason to consider college life away from home.
The two-time state champion from Center Point-Urbana visited Grand Canyon University, and the Antelopes offered the opportunity to join something new.
But Iowa offered an opportunity to chase a childhood dream, and Rathbun accepted Thursday night when he committed to the Hawkeyes.
“I’ve grown up wanting to be a Hawkeye,” he said. “That’s everybody’s dream when they’ve grown up in Iowa.”
Rathbun said he also considered Northern Iowa, Grand View and Wartburg, along with Grand Canyon, a program of the process of reclassifying to the Division I level.
“I had a lot of fun out in Arizona, but you can’t beat Iowa,” he said. “I took (the process) pretty serious and really weighed it out. I feel like Iowa is the best fit for me.”
Rathbun owns a 137-3 career record at the high school level. He takes a 96-match winning streak into his senior season and hasn’t lost since the 2013 state finals.
The projected college 133-pounder is the third multi-time state champion to commit to the Hawkeyes this week. He joins his club training partner Carter Happel of Lisbon and Bettendorf’s Jack Wagner.
Rathbun, ranked by InterMat as the No. 84 prospect in the 2016 class, is the fourth top-100 senior to join Iowa’s list of commitments. The Hawkeye haul also includes three-time Ohio state champ Alex Marinelli (No. 3), Happel (30) and Pennsylvanian Kaleb Young (32).
“I’ve been practicing at Iowa (in the Eastern Iowa Wrestling Club) for three years now, so I’m pretty comfortable in the room,” Rathbun said. “I know most of the kids on the team and you can’t say anything bad about Iowa. It’s all good.”