Why WR commit Tyrone Tracy is a great fit in Iowa’s new offense, in-state DE target John Waggoner adds another offer and more
The best way to start your day is right here at Landof10.com as we prepare you for everything you need to know about Iowa sports. We’ll share our Iowa Breakfast Club here with you at 8:30 a.m. (ET) Monday through Friday.
So let’s get to it. Here is the Iowa Breakfast Club for Tuesday, May 9.
Meet Iowa football commit Tyrone Tracy
When describing WR Tyrone Tracy, Kyle Enright pauses between each word.
It’s not meant to add intrigue or build to a dramatic crescendo, though it does both. No, the Indianapolis Decatur Central football coach is searching for the correct way to explain Tracy’s on-field impact. Finally, it comes to him.
“He does everything for us,” Enright said.
Based on his description of the Hawkeyes’ new offense, Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz is all about utilizing his playmakers — playing to their strengths and putting them in position to succeed.
There may be no better player for such a scheme.
Tracy’s position list is nearly as long as a pilot’s pre-flight checklist.
Tracy, a 2018 3-star prospect in the 247Sports Composite rankings, started at running back as a sophomore and rushed for more than 1,200 yards with 11 touchdowns. He moved into the slot last season and caught 40 passes for 651 yards and 9 touchdowns. Tracy also rushed for 578 yards and 9 touchdowns.
“He is a blur and makes plays,” Enright said, “but is willing to do anything to be successful.”
That includes serving as a decoy when needed. Defenses key on Tracy wherever he goes on a play, and motioning him away from the play or faking a handoff to him can open up holes for a teammate.
Most importantly, Enright can move Tracy across the formation to take advantage of mismatches and put him in space, where he excels.
“He was just scratching the surface when it came to catching the ball,” Enright said. “He improved his route running and hands this season.”
Tracy’s size is part of the reason the national powers aren’t knocking on his door. He is listed at 6 feet even and weighs 190 pounds, up 10 pounds from football season.
In Iowa City, a lot of the buzz on the new passing attack focuses on what happens with deep and intermediate routes. But Ferentz wants to play to players’ strengths.
It will be interesting to see how Iowa uses someone capable of stretching defenses both vertically and horizontally. Coaches can be as creative as they want when concocting ways to get Tracy open.
He is the kind of weapon Iowa lacked last season. Riley McCarron was the only receiver with a similar skill set, and he’s now taking his shot at the NFL.
Tracy’s arrival is still a year away, but he seems to be an ideal match for what the Hawkeyes want from their passing game.
Another suitor for John Waggoner
The top-ranked 2018 Iowa high school prospect picked up another offer on Monday as Dowling Catholic DE John Waggoner added Arkansas to his ever-growing list of potential options.
— John Waggoner (@johnwaggs_12) May 8, 2017
The Breakfast Club doesn’t bring this up just to highlight the latest news with the 4-star prospect from West Des Moines.
Instead, it’s mentioned to serve as a reminder.
Waggoner’s offer list stands at 12 and includes national powers Ohio State, Michigan, LSU and Oklahoma. Oregon, Penn State and UCLA are there, as well.
Waggoner’s recruitment will be different from that of most No. 1 in-state players. Michigan didn’t come around until late on Iowa’s top 2017 prospect, Oliver Martin — and the Wolverines signed him.
Martin was a late bloomer, not drawing the attention of Power 5 programs until after a breakout senior season. Iowa will need to fend off the big boys from the start with Waggoner. It doesn’t mean the Hawkeyes can’t land him. It just means it’ll be tougher to pull off.
Big Ten Softball Tournament bracket announced
Iowa is opening the Big Ten Softball Tournament as the No. 11 seed and will face No. 6 seed Wisconsin in a first-round game on Thursday (7 p.m., ET, BTN). The tournament starts Thursday at Alumni Field on the Michigan campus.
The Badgers took 2 out of 3 from the Hawkeyes in early April. If Iowa is to pull off the upset, it can’t afford to let Badgers pitcher Kaitlyn Menz get into a groove the way she did in that series opener. The freshman gave up 1 run on 2 hits and 1 walk while striking out 5 in the complete-game, 8-1 victory. Iowa lost the series finale 6-5, but attacked Menz much more aggressively and plated 5 runs on 12 hits in 10 innings.
Menz is a graduate of Waukee (Iowa) High School.
Iowa (19-31, 9-14 Big Ten) will need the bats to come around to make a run in the tournament.
Lots of links
- The Iowa men’s basketball 2017-18 nonconference schedule is nearly complete.
- Why QB signee Peyton Mansell spent a week living with TE signee Jacob Coons and his family before the Iowa spring game.
- Nebraska football coach Mike Riley declined to comment on coach Kirk Ferentz’s recruiting comments.
- Matthew Bain of the Iowa City Press-Citizen looked at what Iowa could do with its two open women’s basketball scholarships.