116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Some sites have Sean Draper listed in the 165 range. Hmmm, is that too thin for Big Ten football?
You know it's not. You don't even have to go back that far to find a similar frame for the Hawkeyes. Micah Hyde graduated from Fostoria (Ohio) High School in the 170-pound range. So, it's been done and is totally doable.
He's another defensive back who Phil Parker might've waited to offer on. Draper's name was around Iowa recruiting, but his commitment didn't come until a day or two before signing day.
Draper is built a lot like Hyde and a few other corners Iowa now has in the pipeline, including B.J. Lowery and Torrey Campbell.
It came down to Iowa and Louisville, but Draper (6-0, 165) also visited Kansas. Here are some words from the Lawrence (Kan.) Journal World.
“These are quality players who have been looked at by a lot of BSC schools,” recruiting analyst Jon Kirby told JW. “And they have options. The fact that they're coming to visit is a great sign that KU has done a great job getting on these types of players in such a short amount of time.”
From ESPN.com: Draper displays the foot quickness and playing speed to effectively play tight man coverage. Has the size and athleticism for the corner back position at the major level of competition; it appears his lean frame is capable of adding some bulk over time, provided playing speed is not compromised. This guy is an aggressive, tough customer who is a willing tackler capable of production as a special team's coverage defender; does a good job returning punts, showing the ability to take the ball up the middle with enough wiggle to avoid tacklers for big yardage.
And . . . "Draper is a play maker who does not appear to be an immediate impact player at the BCS level of play but could see early situational playing time if a red shirt year isn't deemed necessary."
What Iowa coaches said
Recruiting coordinator/TE coach Eric Johnson [I observed that Draper looked "slight]: Actually, he's kind of a thicker kid than you'd think. He's a great-looking kid in person than you might think. He'll start out at the corner position and we really like him. . . . [I observed that Iowa likes to start kids at corner and see where it goes.] Right, you can always move a kid inside.
What I think
I'm sticking with the Micah Hyde comparison. Will it hold up? I don't know. Draper doesn't have the same resume that Hyde had coming out of high school. Hyde did everything but hold his own extra points and lead the band at a smaller school in Ohio. Draper comes out of the highly competitive Glenville (Ohio) Academic Campus. It produces FBS players like the internet produces short attention spans.
The Glenville recruit has major appeal, boasting alums Troy Smith, Ted Ginn Jr. and Donte Whitner. Iowa's had mixed results (you can check the history here in this post I did on Lebron Daniel last fall).
Iowa could use a good story to help with recruiting Glenville. Draper shows the pipeline is still there, but a success would would give Iowa recruiters some highlight video to go to battle with.