When it comes to top football recruits, rankings can vary widely

Pat Harty
Iowa City Press-Citizen
Drew Cook runs drills with teammates at Regina on Friday, July 25, 2014.

When it comes to ranking the top 10 high school senior football recruits from in-state, opinions vary considerably.

Take Drew Cook's case for example. ranks Cook, a 6-5, 220-pound quarterback from Iowa City Regina, and a University of Iowa commit, as the top senior prospect in Iowa, whereas doesn't even rank him in its top 10, while has Cook ranked ninth.

"He's content with where he is," said Cook's father, Marv Cook, who also is the head football coach at Regina and a former Iowa and NFL tight end. "The rankings don't really affect him.

"His focus is on improving each day and trying to win another state title for Regina."

Cedar Rapids Prairie offensive lineman Bryce Meeker, who is committed to Iowa State, also is all over the charts, ranked first by, seventh by and 10th by

Murray defensive end Seth Nerness, who is another Iowa State commit, is ranked fifth by, but isn't ranked by the other two Internet recruiting services.

All three sites agree, for the most part, on who the top 10 recruits are from in-state in the 2015 class, considering that twins Levi and Landan Paulsen, Jake Newborg, Brett Waechter, Ryan Boyle, Julian Good-Jones, Anthony Nelson and Bryce Meeker fill eight spots on each of the three lists.

Many factors go into ranking recruits, including how much exposure each one gets while attending evaluation camps in the spring and summer.

Cook's ranking also might be impacted by what position he falls under. and both rank him as an athlete, while ranks him as a quarterback.

Cook wants to play quarterback at Iowa and he said Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz has granted him that request to start his career.

NCAA rules prohibit college coaches from commenting publicly on a specific recruit before the recruit has signed a national letter of intent. The national signing period for football will start on the first Wednesday in February.

Cook is one of six high school seniors from in-state who are committed to Iowa's 2015 recruiting class. The others are the Paulsen twins, who both play on offensive line; fellow offensive linemen Newborg and Waechter; and Boyle, who plays quarterback for defending Class 4A state champion West Des Moines Dowling Catholic. Iowa's 2015 class has 14 recruits overall.

Iowa State has three players from in-state committed to its 2015 class: Nelson, Good-Jones and Nerness.

What's unusual is that none of Iowa's six recruits from in-state has an offer from Iowa State, and neither of Iowa State's three commits from in-state has an offer from Iowa.

Reach Pat Harty at 339-7370 or

Top 10 in-state high school senior football recruits

Rank Player Position Hometown Height Weight Stars Grade College

• 1. Drew Cook ATH Iowa City Regina 6-4, 220 4-star 80 Iowa

• 2. Jake Newborg OG Inwood West Lyon 6-2, 271 3-star 77 Iowa

• 3. Anthony Nelson DE Waukee High School, 6-6, 215 3-star 76 Iowa State

• 4. Levi Paulsen OT, Moville/Woodbury Central, 6-5, 255 3-star 76 Iowa

• 5. Landan Paulsen OG, Moville/Woodbury Central 6-5, 257 3-star 75 Iowa

• 6. Brett Waechter DE, Hartley, Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn, 6-4, 260, 3-star 75 Iowa

• 7. Julian Good-Jones OT, Cedar Rapids Washington, 6-5, 270 3-star 75 Iowa State

• 8. Garrett Jansen DE, Pella Community High School, 6-1, 243, 3-star 75 Cincinnati

• 9. Ryan Boyle QB, West Des Moines Dowling Catholic, 6-2, 205, 3-star 75 Iowa

• 10. Bryce Meeker OT, Cedar Rapids Prairie, 6-5, 290, 3-star 74 Iowa State

• 1. Landan Paulsen

• 2. Levi Paulsen

• 3. Ryan Boyle

• 4. Jake Newborg

• 5. Julian Good-Jones

• 6. Seth Nerness DE Murray (Iowa) Murray Junior-Senior High School, 6-3, 220 Iowa State

• 7. Bryce Meeker

• 8. Garrett Jansen

• 9. Anthony Nelson

• 10. Brett Waechter

• 1. Bryce Meeker

• 2. Landan Paulsen

• 3. Levi Paulsen

• 4. Julian Good-Jones

• 5. Brett Waechter

• 6. Jake Newborg

• 7. Anthony Nelson

• 8. Ryan Boyle

• 9. Drew Cook

• 10. Bryce Kemp TE, Collins-Maxwell-Baxter, 6-4, 208, Eastern Michigan