The recruitment of Mick Ellis lasted less than a week.
According to HawkeyeReport.com, Iowa offered the Lucas, Texas, native a scholarship on July 2. He committed Monday morning via Twitter.
Officially a Hawkeye #D1Athlete— Mick Ellis (@mickellis22) July 8, 2013
“They contacted me and said they were looking to bring in a kicker this year and wanted to see if I would be a good fit, kind of like an interview,” Ellis told HawkeyeReport.com. “After we talked for a while, they offered and invited me out on July 26th to come check out the school and meet with the coaches and see the facilities and everything.”
As a junior at Lovejoy High School in Lucas, Ellis earned first team all-state honors after making 13 of 17 field goals with a long of 53. In addition to an offer from Yale, Ellis heard from LSU, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma.
Kickers and punters take a little different road to their scholarships. Those serious about the craft travel the summer camp circuit heavily. Two of the national leaders in this — Chris Sailer Kicking and Kohl’s Kicking — had high marks for Ellis.
The Sailer camp listed Ellis as the No. 4 kicker in the 2014 class. “Mick is simply an outstanding kicker. He has one of the biggest legs in his class and kicks with excellent consistency off the ground. Field goals are D1 ready right now. He is also big on kickoffs. Kicks very well under pressure. A focused and mentally ready kicker. Mick is a fine young man with a great attitude and work ethic.”
Kohl’s Kicking rated Ellis No. 13 for the ’14 class. “Mick attended two Kohl’s Showcase Camps in the spring of 2013, he showed D1 talent at both events, Mick is able to drive KO’s 75 yards (with a tailwind) consistently, his FG’s improved from camp 1 to camp 2, he could get better height on FG and KO’s, if he can do this he could be a top 5 kicker in the nation, very talented, should land at a D1 school.”
As far as Iowa and current kickers, Mike Meyer will be a senior this season. Redshirt sophomore walk-on Marshall Koehn will be the backup at kicker and punter for the Hawkeyes this fall. Koehn is the heir apparent to Meyer for 2014, when Ellis will be on campus as a true freshman.
Ellis is the third recruit first-year assistant Chris White is credited with recruiting or assisting in recruiting. Ellis also is the third commitment White has been able to pick up before a visit to Iowa City, joining defensive back Omar Truit and outside linebacker Jameer Outsey.
“Finally,” said Ellis, who suffered a torn ACL late in the 2011 football season. “I’ve been kind of searching for that spot for a long time now. It’s always been my dream to play big time Division I football and Iowa is a school that has 70,000 plus at every home game. It’s exciting to havee your dream become a reality.”
Ellis is the 10th known commitment for Iowa’s 2014 recruiting class. The number for Iowa’s ’14 class will be between 15 and the low 20s.
Ross Pierschbacher, OL, 6-4, 275 Cedar Falls High School ****
Jay Scheel, QB 6-2, 170 Union High School (La Porte City) ****
Lucas LeGrand, OL, 6-5, 260 Dubuque Senior High School ***
Omar Truitt, CB, 5-11, 185, St. John’s College High School (Washington D.C.) ***
C.J. Hilliard, RB, 5-9, 192, St. Xavier High School (Cincinnati, Ohio) ***
Jyaz Jones, S, 6-0, 172, South Oak Cliff High School (Dallas, Texas) **
Jameer Outsey, OLB, 6-3, 220, Franklin High School (Somerset, N.J.) ***
Keegan Render, OL, 6-3, 310, Indianola High School ***
Matt Nelson, DE, 6-7, 249, Xavier High School (Cedar Rapids) ***
Mick Ellis, K, 5-9, 185, Lovejoy High School (Lucas, Texas) No rating
* — Rivals.com star rating