CEDAR RAPIDS — Iowa State was the first — and, so far, only — Division I school to offer O’Rien Vance a college football scholarship. That was good enough for the all-state junior linebacker-defensive end from Cedar Rapids Washington to pull the trigger Tuesday and give his verbal commitment to the Cyclones.
Vance’s pledge comes roughly two months after Iowa State and new head coach Matt Campbell initially extended him an offer. He follows Waterloo West quarterback Devon Moore as the second member of ISU’s 2017 recruiting class.
“One reason for committing was that I got the chance to really get a feel for the coaching staff and what they are trying to do,” Vance said. “Everything is upbeat. It’s a great place to be.”
The 6-foot-3, 210-pound Vance led Washington with 101 tackles this past season, 82 solo. Lined up at various spots along the defensive line, in order to take advantage of his quickness and athleticism, Vance had 25 tackles for loss, four solo sacks, a fumble recovery and two interceptions.
He will join former high-school teammates Julian Good-Jones and Landen Akers at ISU. They red-shirted as freshmen this past season.
Iowa State also has a scholarship offer out to Washington sophomore offensive lineman Andrew Todd.
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“I’d say I’m explosive, very aggressive, quick and lengthy,” Vance said. “And very upbeat. I love the game.”
Vance was voted a first-team all-state linebacker in Class 4A this past season by the Iowa Newspaper Association. He also was a first-team all-Metro and Gazette all-area first-teamer.
Despite his verbal commit, Vance said he still would listen to other schools if they are interested in him.
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