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Iowa, Iowa State and Drake are far from alone in their full-throttle pursuit of Dowling Catholic 2020 guard Caitlin Clark. Matthew Bain, Sports writer

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Let's get right to the questions.

Which way are Josh Volk and Blaise Gunnerson leaning? Are they a package deal? — @iowafanwilliams

Cedar Rapids Xavier offensive lineman Josh Volk and Kuemper Catholic defensive end Blaise Gunnerson are both major in-state 2020 targets for Iowa State and Iowa.

First, real quick on Gunnerson: He declined an interview this week, saying he's "focusing on making a decision for my future." Sounds like he might not be too far off from a commitment. And no, he and Volk are not a package deal.

I talked with Volk for a while Tuesday night, after he got back from a high school business conference in Des Moines. He said rehab on his ACL is going well. He's been riding an exercise bike for about a month now, in addition to all his other stretches. His three-month check-in is on March 2, and he hopes the doctors will clear him to run.

In terms of his decision: Volk said he'll announce his commitment within "a week or two."

Does he already know where he's committing?

"Almost," he said. "I have a really good feeling."

Volk holds offers from Iowa, Iowa State and Nebraska, although this has long been thought to be a battle between the Cyclones and Hawkeyes.

Iowa State was first to offer Volk in December 2017. Iowa offered last June.

On Iowa, Volk said: "Our relationship is really good. Me and (offensive line) coach (Tim) Polasek text a lot. I’ve been down there, I think, maybe more than 10 times. It’s just a good place. Their school of business is really good. The atmosphere — just, everything is good down there."

On Iowa State, Volk said: "It’s the same thing with Iowa State. Everything is good. Relationships with coaches, everything is good. It's a battle. Those schools are so good."

When it comes to splitting hairs, Volk said he's looking at which school would provide a better experience for him in the classroom. 

"Football is fun, but you obviously have to have a back-up plan," he said. "So I’d probably choose the school with the best academics, where I could fit in the most and get the best degree that I would want."

When asked why he wants to commit now, Volk had a simple response: Why wait?

"I feel like, when I make the decision, I know it’s going to be the right decision because I’ve just had a lot of time to think," he said. "It’s starting to get to a point where I probably need to commit somewhere. Get it going a little bit faster, get it locked in."

If you had to bet the house, where would you say Xavier Foster is going? — @JoeVanderWerf

If I had to bet the house, I'd say Oskaloosa five-star 2020 forward Xavier Foster is staying in-state. That's the only branch I'm comfortable standing on right now.

At this juncture, it's pretty much a coin flip between Iowa and Iowa State. Folks around both programs feel good about their chances with the 7-footer, and the family has kept things close to the vest.

There are always going to be rumors about a kid leaning in one direction or the other, especially when it's an in-state star considering the state's two high-major programs.

But, according to those in Foster's camp, rumors suggesting Foster is leaning more toward the Hawkeyes or Cyclones are just that — a rumor.

During conversations with them this week, both Foster's high school coach and his AAU coach told me they have no reason to believe the talented junior is leaning in any direction right now. BG Regins, Foster's AAU coach, said Foster has been quiet about his recruitment for a while.

"(Any lean) would be news to me," Oskaloosa head coach Ryan Parker said, "and I talk to him every day."

I'll be very intrigued to see what, if anything, develops this spring and summer when Foster plays his AAU ball with Pure Prep Academy. Kansas has offered. Duke and Kentucky have shown interest. Several other programs, including Michigan and Ohio State, have nibbled in the past. And obviously UCLA and USC are involved, too.

If nothing serious unfolds after this summer, I'd say it's Iowa or Iowa State. If something else does materialize this summer, we'll see.

What’s your favorite recruiting hashtag pun? — @JoeJHoyt

This might sound silly, but hashtags are serious business in today's college football recruiting landscape. You want a catchy and unique tagline that prospects can associate with your school.

For Iowa State's 2019 class, the hashtag was #Cycl19neStandard.

For Iowa, it was #SWARM19.

I'm a Mountain West product, so I liked San Jose State's hashtag: #BuildTheSh19ld. Maybe it's the history nerd in me digging the reference to a Spartan's gear, but I just think "Build the Shield" is cool, especially if I played on defense. Also, shield is one of the few words where the "19" looks a decent amount like the letters it's replacing.

SJSU could use a good hashtag, too. It boasts three wins over the past two seasons.

What is the status on Nijel Pack out of Indiana? — @markallendaniel

Nijel Pack is a 6-2, three-star point guard out of Lawrence Central in Indianapolis. In terms of his status with Iowa: He is a prospect right now, not yet a target.

To me, a target is somebody a school has offered.

The Hawkeyes have 28 offers out to 2020 athletes, according to 247Sports, but they're still evaluating more. That process never stops, really, as coaches are constantly keeping eyes and ears open for talent. (It's the same with remaining 2019 kids, too.)

Iowa is still in the evaluation process with Pack. He told me he's in regular contact with Hawkeye assistant coach Sherman Dillard, and that Iowa plans to watch him this spring and summer when Pack plays his AAU ball with Indy Heat. Depending on what Dillard and the staff sees, and likely depending on how things are shaping up with other players on their board, Pack may or may not receive an offer. 

There's no question Iowa is interested. It hosted him for an unofficial visit in January.

"(Dillard) likes my true point guard ability," Pack told me this week. "How I’m able to run a team, get my teammates going and score."

Pack is a mid-major guy right now, but he could break into the high-major ranks with a good spring and summer. He holds offers from Bradley, Southern Illinois, Indiana State and Toledo, among others. Iowa isn't the only high-major looking at him, either.

According to MaxPreps, Pack is averaging 16.2 points, four rebounds, 3.9 assists and 2.1 steals per game this season.

Hawk defense needs a rim protector (Olesani-like). Any prospects for that type of big man? — @hawk2949

Before getting too much into this, I'll refer you to Version 1 of the Iowa 2020 recruiting big board from December.

Take a few seconds to peruse.

...

Got it?

OK. So, yes, Iowa is pursuing several 2020 targets who would help protect the rim. Foster tops the list.

Second on the big board is Minnesota four-star Dawson Garcia, who has already taken officials to Marquette, Texas and Baylor. 247Sports' Evan Daniels reported a couple weeks ago that he'll also take an unofficial to Iowa in March. The Hawkeyes were in to see him multiple times in the fall.

Four-star Ben Carlson is another Minnesota product the Hawkeyes are high on. Iowa State is heavily recruiting him, too.

Someone I didn't include in the initial big board is Milwaukee four-star Jamari Sibley — who is included on the initial Iowa State big board. Iowa has emerged as one of the main schools recruiting Sibley this winter, along with the Cyclones and Marquette, among a handful of others.

Sibley had a big summer and has added offers from Georgetown, Rutgers, Florida, Syracuse, Virginia Tech and Clemson during the school year. You can expect plenty of coaches on the sidelines for his games this AAU season.

Matthew Bain covers college football and basketball recruiting for the Des Moines Register. He also helps out with Iowa and Iowa State football and basketball coverage for HawkCentral and Cyclone Insider. Contact him at mbain@dmreg.com and follow him on Twitter @MatthewBain_.

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