The Iowa basketball team wasn't the only program making recruiting hay over the weekend; Tom Brands & Co. picked up a significant recruit as well. Iowa landed a verbal commitment from Wyatt Henson, a highly-regarded lightweight prospect from Missouri.
Excited to be a Hawkeye! Lets gooooooo!! pic.twitter.com/VnFsgUdwOo— dash (@wyatthenson9) October 20, 2019
(that's Henson in the ripped jeans between head coach Tom Brands and assistant coaches Ryan Morningstar and Bobby Telford)
Henson is a Class of 2021 recruit, so he has some time before he arrives in Iowa City. His last name may be familiar to longtime wrestling fans -- he's the son of Sammie Henson, a former World gold medalist (1998) and Olympic silver medalist (2000). Henson was also a two-time NCAA champion at Clemson, winning titles in 1993 (when he beat Iowa's Chad Zaputil in the final, 3-2) and 1994.
The younger Henson is building his own resume, though. Henson started his career in Pennsylvania and finished fifth at the state tournament as a freshman. His family moved to Missouri last year and Henson won a state championship as a sophomore. He also finished third in the freestyle competition at Junior Nationals in Fargo over the summer and also placed 3rd at the high-profile Super 32 Challenge event in recent weeks.
Flowrestling ranks Henson #7 at 132 lbs (as a junior) and the #22 overall prospect in the Class of 2021. Obviously, those rankings could climb higher if Henson continues to progress as he had over the last year or so. Henson has mainly wrestled at 126 lbs thus far, but intends to wrestle at 138 lbs this year. He projects as a likely 141 lb prospect (or possible 149er) in college.
What led Henson to choose Iowa? The Brands bros. -- and the Iowa fanbase, according to an interview with The Des Moines Register.
"I really like their style of wrestling and coaching styles," Henson said in a phone interview with the Des Moines Register. "The Brands brothers remind me of my dad, and I really like that."
"The pace in the room and the way the Brands brothers coach their guys, I really liked that," Henson said. "I like the fan base. It's huge. There's definitely high expectations here."
Henson is the only member of Iowa's 2021 recruiting class at this point; previous commit Ryan Sokol re-opened his recruitment in August. Henson is a nice new building block to kickstart things for the 2021 class, though. Welcome aboard, Wyatt.