Let's face facts: There's not much to take away from an Iowa spring game. Even in a season where the Hawkeyes are preparing an ostensibly new offense, that offense is in a larval stage where the casual observer won't understand much.
But after years of the "spring game" being a burden that Kirk Ferentz tried mightily to throw off his shoulders, Iowa football figured out what Nebraska and Penn State had long figured out: The Spring Game is a chance to build cheap goodwill with fans. It gives them hope for the next four months, as the offseason truly goes off. And if you have a spectacle already in place, might as well recruit with it.
And so we got a bunch of incoming and prospective recruits on campus Friday and a nice spot on BTN Friday night (albeit tape delayed to show Wisconsin). And on Saturday and Sunday, the Spring Game bore some actual fruit, none more interesting than Wisconsin-based running back Henry Geil.
THE WAIT IS OVER... I'm blessed beyond measure to be able to make this announcement pic.twitter.com/7uzOO2GT9T— Henry A. Geil (@HenryGeil6) April 23, 2017
Geil is a consensus three-star halfback out of Green Bay. Scout has him as the best halfback in Wisconsin this year, and both Scout and 247 have him among the best players in the state (247 ranks him behind Waunakee halfback Lawrence Johnson, who has been recruited by Iowa but not offered).
Iowa State was the first program to offer him a scholarship back in February, and Iowa followed soon thereafter. There aren't a lot of comparables on his offer sheet -- Syracuse and Indiana were his two best offers after Iowa -- or at least there weren't until late last week, when Michigan State offered him. His commitment to Iowa a couple of days later is interesting, given the battles between those two schools in recent years over precisely this type of player.
And what player is that? For one, he already has ideal size: 6'1", 200 lbs. That's not to say he's ready to play on the first day -- his listed 40 yard dash time is 4.8, and that's on recruiting sites -- but at least there's not a three-year Akrum Problem in the offing. Geil ran for 768 yards and 14 scores last season, not gigantic production but certainly enough for Iowa's staff, and I defer to them on all things scouting. I'm not watching Green Bay high school game tape. That's creepy.
So welcome to Iowa City, Mr. Geil. Hope you enjoy the show.