Iowa recruiting mailbag: Scott Frost's impact on Iowa; who's the next Hawkeye to commit?

Matthew Bain
Hawk Central

Hey everyone. I'm pumped for the Iowa state boys' basketball tournament next week. I'll essentially be there all day every day, checking out the best talent in the state.

Nebraska coach Scott Frost answers a question during an NCAA college football signing day news conference in Lincoln, Neb., Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

And there's a lot of college talent there this year. Obviously Class 4A has some dude named Joe Wieskamp. In Class 3A, there's sophomores Xavier Foster and Bowen Born. In Class 1A, Grand View Christian junior power forward Issa Samake holds an Iowa State offer. 

So feel free to ask as many questions as you want about those guys next week. I'll probably write you a novel.

Until then, let's answer what you all asked this week.

(And, again, if I don't get to your question this week, I will do my best to answer it in future weeks.)

It hurts Iowa recruiting in the short-term. There's no way around that.

Kids want to play for Scott Frost. When someone that exciting takes hold of a legacy program and breathes new life into it, it's going to be a force on the recruiting trail.

Now, can Frost actually build something and maintain that momentum? The answer to that question determines if the new Huskers regime will continue to hurt Iowa recruiting in the long-term.

Nebraska coach Scott Frost.

In the short-term, Frost already beat out Iowa for Will Honas, the best junior college linebacker in the country and probably Iowa's top 2018 target. That one stung for the Hawkeyes, as Frost swooped in late and plucked Honas, who was considered an early Iowa favorite.

Frost just offered Waverly-Shell Rock defensive end Mosai Newsom, considered an early 2019 lean for Iowa. And he's also in the running for prime Hawkeye 2019 targets David Bell, Nick Henrich and Max Duggan.

But, at this point, it's hard to pinpoint exactly how and where the Huskers could hurt Iowa.

Nebraska pursues more national-type prospects than Iowa. It's also using an "offer everyone" approach for the 2019 class under Frost. It has extended 203 2019 offers, according to 247Sports. For comparison, Iowa has extended 91 offers, according to 247Sports. There's some overlap there, sure. But I can't confidently say Iowa and Nebraska's top targets align a whole bunch.

I can, however, more confidently say that with Purdue.

The Boilermakers don't usually pursue the national-type recruits that Nebraska does. That arguably makes them a bigger threat to Iowa, as Jeff Brohm is courting the same Midwest prospects pool that Iowa's trying to tap.

Think of former Hawkeye pledge Larry Tracy, an Indianapolis defensive back who's gotten a whole lot of love from Purdue since he decommitted. Or Jayden McDonald, for whom Iowa beat out Purdue (among others) to wrap up its 2018 class.

But, again, that's the short-term. Let's see how long Brohm stays at Purdue and keeps the Boilermakers a strong recruiting force.

Iowa State 2019 QB recruit Easton Dean (No. 2) rushes the ball during a game for Labette County High in Altamont, Kansas.

Any Idea on Iowa offer for Easton Dean being for TE rather than QB? – @PCG1637

This was one of the more interesting questions I received. Easton Dean is a 6-foot-6, 220-pound dual-threat quarterback from Labette County, Kan. He committed to Iowa State (his first offer) on Feb. 10 and has visited Ames twice.

Iowa then offered on Feb. 17. He is the Hawkeyes' sixth quarterback offer for 2019.

I haven't heard any chatter about Iowa looking at Dean as a tight end. And honestly, I hadn't even thought of it until PCG1637's question. But it certainly makes sense, given his size and Iowa's history of turning quarterbacks to tight ends.

So, I asked Dean, and he said Iowa offered him as a quarterback.

That's the right choice. While Dean has the physical make-up of Iowa's most successful quarterback-turned-tight-ends, his athleticism is so enticing at quarterback. His gaping strides and uncanny balance make him a constant threat for chunk plays on the ground. If his arm gets stronger and he starts progressing through reads more consistently and effectively, Dean will be a four-star prospect.

He's a firm Iowa State pledge at this point, and I don't think he'd decommit to flip to Iowa. But if this kid's stock soars next season (and it could), I wouldn't be shocked to see national recruiting programs start to take interest.

Yeah, Jack Campbell's the guy you're talking about. He told me he's down to Iowa, Iowa State and Minnesota, and that he wants to commit after Cedar Falls' basketball season is done. The Tigers just advanced to the state tournament, so their season will end at some point next week.

So, simply playing the odds, Campbell is definitely a guy to watch to be the next Hawkeye to commit.

Other names I'd start to keep an eye on as we turn the page to spring ... 

  • Cameron Baker, in-state linebacker out of Council Bluffs Thomas Jefferson
  • Jirehl Brock, running back out of Quincy, Ill.
  • Noah Fenske, in-state offensive guard out of New Hampton
  • Mosai Newsom, in-state defensive end out of Waverly-Shell Rock

All the crystal ball experts at 247 sports are high on DJ Carton going to Wisconsin - think it was 80% last time I looked.  Has DJ said or done something specific that would lead one to lean this way?  Has he visited Wisconsin as often as he has visited Iowa? – Kenneth

Word of advice: Don't pay too much attention to any crystal ball until we get into official visit season. And even then, take it with a grain of salt. Especially with a kid like D.J. Carton, who has told me he wants to take his time and extend his recruitment through next summer or fall.

247Sports' "Crystal Ball" has Carton at 80 percent to Wisconsin and 20 percent to Marquette. Wisconsin was his first big-time offer, and he has a great relationship with Marquette head coach Steve Wojciechowski.

But those two schools are just part of the pack right now, along with Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Minnesota and plenty of others. That list will only grow this summer.

Also, go ahead and click on the list of (only) five predictions on Carton's 247Sports profile. You'll see the most recent vote was cast last October. Not very up-to-date. If I were to "vote" at this point where I think Carton will go (which I'm 1,000 percent not going to do), it wouldn't be Wisconsin or Marquette.

In short: Don't worry about any crystal ball. Just enjoy that the state has one of the best point guards in the country, and have fun following along this summer.

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 and follow him on Twitter @MatthewBain_.