CHICAGO — Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn plead guilty in an assault case this winter.
Clayborn was charged with assault causing bodily injury after he allegedly punched a taxicab driver who honked at him in January 2009.
There was more to it than just the honking. Clayborn said Tuesday the incident turned racial and the N-word was used.
“It’s a racial slur and I’m pretty sure I’m going to get it again, being on the stage that I am,” Clayborn said Tuesday. “Now that I know how to handled it, it’s something I learned from. I regret doing it, but I wouldn’t take it back. I think it made me a better person.”
Clayborn is from St. Louis. That was the first time he heard that word used toward him in Iowa.
“It was a shock to me and I never dealt with that situation,” he said. “Now that I’ve dealt with it, it’ll never happen again.”
Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz called the incident a “spit in the ocean.” Clayborn wasn’t punishment for the incident.
“When this all happened, I researched it, not just with Adrian but with several sources, and I was very comfortable with what I learned,” Ferentz said. “It was never an issue with me. I was very confident it was going to get resolved. . . . I think the biggest mistake he made that day was getting out of the car. If he stayed in the car, nothing would’ve happened.”
Yes, Clayborn is insured for the 2010 season.
He passed up entering the NFL draft last April — Ferentz believes he would’ve been picked in the first round — and is everybody’s all-American at defensive end heading into this season.
For a little peace of mind, he and his family did buy into the NCAA’s insurance program (Exceptional Student-Athlete Disability Insurance), which usually includes 100 to 150 athletes a year.
An NCAA football player has to project — the NCAA conducts confidential evaluations — into the top three rounds of the draft to be eligible. The student is issued a loan and must repay it when eligibility is up.
The insurance is invididualized and can cover as much as $5 million for football. Premiums cost around $10,000 per $1 million insured.
Clayborn didn’t talk numbers, but did confirm it’s been purchased.
“To know that you have something in case you get injured, you might as well do it to protect yourself,” Clayborn said.
Ferentz said it’s probably a good deal for the insurance company.
“There are very few career-ending injuries, and that’s what that insurance is for,” Ferentz said. “Conversely, if a guy comes back to college and has his eyes on the NFL, I don’t think that’s a good deal for anybody. I think this works out.”
Coming in at 207
During his recruiting visit, Illinois defensive lineman Riley McMinn talked to Iowa defensive tackle Karl Klug about putting on weight.
McMinn, who orally committed to the Hawkeyes is a light-ish defensive lineman at 6-7, 220 or pounds. Klug, who’s now 270 pounds, told him it’s doable. And he would know. Klug reported to Iowa five years ago as a 207-pound defensive end.
“I’ll never forget big Wes Aeschliman,” Klug said of the former Iowa offensive tackle who stood 6-8 and weighed 320 pounds. “One day at practice, he literally lifted me off the ground and ran down the field with me.”
Klug is doing the heavy lifting now. He was honorable mention all-Big Ten last season with four sacks.
On his Twitter account Tuesday afternoon, Florida prep cornerback Torrey Campbell wrote “It’s a GREAT day! I-O-W-A…”
The 5-11, 180-pounder from Baron Collier High School in Naples, Fla., picked Iowa over Tennessee, Boston College, Kentucky and Louisville. He had 13 offers.
Campbell is Iowa’s 12th commitment for the 2011 recruiting class.