When a major program loses a key recruit, Rivals.com examines the extent of the blow to the school involved, analyzing it locally and nationally. To quantify the “sting” of each disengage, we assign a score from 1 to 10, with 1 being unimportant and 10 being a catastrophic hit.
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Iowa scored big in June when the four-star running back Kendrick Raphael committed to the Hawkeyes.
He hails from talent-rich Florida and since his commitment to Iowa, many other teams have started coming after the talented running back from Naples, Florida. So much so that Raphael decided to reconsider his commitment to the Hawkeyes and take a closer look at his recruitment.
The four-star is the only one to opt out of Iowa’s recruiting class so far this round of recruiting as a coach Kirk Ferentz and its staff generally avoid a lot of drama when it comes to landing players. In the entire class of 2022, the Hawkeyes also only had one player who backed out of his promise.
Oregon recently made a serious run at Raphaël which piqued his interest, then NC status, Vanderbilt, BYU and others have also reached out.
Raphael was one of Iowa’s top-ranked commits and the only running back in his class, so there’s no way to really rubber him. The only redeeming factor for the Hawkeyes would be that he got to a position where they have a lot of young depth with all five stock players in their sophomore or younger room, including the true freshmen. Kaleb Johnson who entered as a four-star rookie this year and just played his first 100-yard game last weekend. Additionally, the timing should give the Iowa coaching staff a chance to find a replacement in this class and they have already contacted Nolan Raya Maryland commit, who was Iowa’s other main target in June alongside Raphael. – Blair Sanderson, HawkeyeReport.com
Sting factor: seven
Anyone who has watched Iowa football a lot so far this season can easily say the Hawkeyes need playmakers on offense and Raphael would have been a good fit in this offense as someone who has a good size, can easily play 200 pounds in college and can run between tackles or go out for extra yards. He would have been a very welcome addition to Iowa’s recruiting class, so this disengagement really hurts. But for Iowa, it’s not the end of the world and not even close. There are already names the Hawkeyes could pursue next for their running back room, Iowa always develop their running backs well and know what they want to do on offense – for better or for worse sometimes – and everything Having Raphael would have been great to add another point guard, there are plenty more who will be interested in playing behind a strong offensive line that the Hawkeyes bring year after year. – Adam Gorney, National Director of RecruitmentSting factor: 5