Iowa doesn't mess around with jucos.
The coaches bring them in and play them or they don't even scout them.
Iowa found Dan Heiar and didn't mess around with him.
The Iowa Western Community College grad signed his papers in December and is on Iowa's campus. He'll participate in spring practice and could be in the mix for one of the open guard spots on Iowa's OL.
The tackles are set. Center is set. Both guard spots are open. Adam Gettis and Nolan MacMillan could have first dibs, but both dealt with late-season injuries. Gettis should be ready for spring. MacMillan is iffy.
Heiar is a native of Charlotte and graduate of Northeast High School in Goose Lake, does have a redshirt available.
“But they don’t bring JUCO guys in to redshirt, and I don’t plan on redshirting,” Heiar told Hawk Central.
This was another head-to-head win for the Iowa staff against Michigan State (Mika'il McCall, Darian Cooper) this recruiting season.
Links -- If you live in Council Bluffs and can't get to Iowa City for football, you might want to slide on out to Iowa Western Community College. Here's a link with a picture of the players coach Scott Strohmeier helped into FBS. (That QB is huge, BTW.)
Three most interesting bio items -- 1) Helped Iowa Western claim the Midwest Football Conference Championship with a 9-2 record last season. 2) Helped prep team, Northeast Goose Lake, to a 22-8 record in three seasons as a starter. 3) Played in Zions Top of the Mountain Bowl as member of Iowa Western.
Ferentz on -- Solid offensive line class with Austin Blythe, Jordan Walsh and Heiar, who might build a bridge between this year's class and the 2009 group, which could be two-deep ready this season.
"And Dan was semi-accidental in that we don't actively recruit junior college players but he came to our attention and liked what we saw on tape and thought that he would be a really good fit and we are excited about him, too," Ferentz said.
The '09 class will be redshirt sophomores this season. If Heiar doesn't redshirt, he'll be a year ahead of them and he also could be physically ready to play at 6-5, 285.
"We kind of felt we were done, but then we saw Dan Heiar on tape and we felt so strongly about him," recruiting coordinator Eric Johnson said. "We could bring him in mid-year. He could help us boost some numbers and depth in, technically, his junior class, where the numbers weren’t so big to start out with. We filled two needs right there, so we’re very excited about the O-line in this class."
Projection is fun -- Heiar is on the Marshal Yanda path to NFL stardom.
OK, he's on the path. He's has a similar history -- a small-town Iowan who goes juco and ends up with his dream opportunity.
But let's not get crazy. I'm not sure anyone knew what they had in Yanda at Iowa until Yanda happened. We're talking about a player with uncommon strength and toughness.
Heiar could end up with a similar career, but Yanda was uncommon to say the least.
I think Heiar helps the Hawkeyes on the inside. At 6-5, he probably could play tackle, but those are spoken for next year (Riley Reiff and Markus Zusevics). Could he redshirt and slide into one of those spots in 2012?
The possibility of a redshirt year is interesting, but not likely.
Look for Heiar to bring some push at guard. Clock is running for him, as a juco, and he's going to be a hungry player because of it.