IOWA CITY, Iowa — The Class of 2018 is almost complete for Iowa, but not completely.
There are still a few open scholarships, with as many as three more players potentially coming aboard.
Iowa wants to land one more linebacker, and ideally it’s Jayden McDonald.
But beyond that, how will the Hawkeyes fill out the class? Typically, the Hawkeyes take a best player or best athlete available approach with the last scholarship or two. That’s great, but what position group would most benefit from an extra player?
Land of 10 is looking at what would be the best, or ideal, position groups to fill with the final scholarships.
The Hawkeyes don’t need a tight end. Noah Fant and T.J. Hockenson have the position locked down for the foreseeable future.
But Iowa is a team that can never bring in enough tight ends (that’s a theme you’ll see again on this list). The Hawkeyes integrate tight ends into their offense in ways a lot of modern college teams don’t and find ways to utilize the position.
That’s a good reason to identify a tight end in January, but not the best reason. If a team wants to add an athlete, tight end is one of the best positions to look at.
A player projected to play tight end can pack on enough weight to become an offensive lineman (such as Ike Boettger). He could end up at defensive end. Linebacker is a possibility for some. Or he could stay at tight end.
The position group is home to players that fit the general athlete description. Often, high school tight ends maintain enough athleticism at their new position for it to be a major advantage. Iowa can do a lot worse than finding a tight end and letting the weight room, his genetics and body type dictate his future home.
Iowa is at a spot in trying to rejuvenate its passing game that almost taking anyone and seeing if he can help isn’t a bad strategy. (That feels a little like the strategy used with the newly-departed Matt Quarells.)
Wide receiver is arguably the position most in need of an upgrade. Iowa is still searching for players to come in and become playmakers at the position.
This very well may be part of the thinking about Iowa visiting 2018 wide receiver Nikia Jones this past week.
Teams believe they can never have enough talent here. Iowa falls into that category.
Right now, the Hawkeyes are overflowing with options on the defensive line. But it was only a few years ago they struggled to find players to fill out the rotation.
That’s a predicament no team wants to be in and one that makes it hard for a team to overcome and still win at a high level. That’s why it’s never a bad idea to try to identify an additional defensive lineman late in the recruiting process.
If an athletic lineman puts on too much weight, or shows more promise on offense, he can always switch to the offensive line.