116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — Fifteen-year-old Cody Fox already is 6 feet, 4 inches and 265 pounds, and he’s only going into his sophomore year of high school.
He still has to have parental consent for an interview with the local paper, but Fox already has decided to play football at Iowa, becoming the first Hawkeye football commit in the Class of 2024.
“I was surprised,” Fox said. “I went to camp and to walk away with a scholarship, I was pretty excited.”
Fox has an older brother, Taylor Fox, who redshirted after he walked on to the Hawkeyes in 2019. He’s a sophomore on the roster. And maybe it was the school’s familiarity with his brother or the fact his dad, Dan, felt more confident navigating the recruiting process this time around by taking Cody to camp sooner.
“We didn’t go down to Iowa until right before Taylor’s junior year and they kind of knew who he was there, but we’re Class A football,” Dan said. “And then we learned after his junior year that we can go to more camps, so each time they got to know him better.”
Either way, the offer came as a shock to the East Buchanan offensive lineman.
“When Coach (Kirk) Ferentz gave him the offer, he had to ask twice,” East Buchanan football coach Jerry Alden said. “That was his first elite camp, the first time going up against some of the best, he had been to.”
Cody is a multi-sport athlete, competing in wrestling, track and field, and baseball and plans to keep it that way through his remaining three years of high school.
He comes from an athletic family, too, with his dad being a former wrestler at Wartburg College. His mom, Marcy, played softball at Kirkwood Community College. She’s now the head softball coach at East Buchanan.
But Cody credits his brother, Taylor, for pushing him all these years to get to where he is. Now that he’s verbally committed to his dream school, Cody wants to focus on taking the Buccaneers to a district title and playoff run. The Buccaneers went 3-4 last season.
East Buchanan runs the wishbone offense, which means the team hardly throws the ball, playing with a fullback behind the quarterback and two running backs on either side. So, the one thing Cody needs to work on is his pass-blocking, which the Iowa coaches were able to coach him on during camp.
“The Iowa coaches were joking with him that we still run the wishbone up here, but we'll work on that pass blocking later on,” Alden said. “He’s one of those kids who’s not going to shy away from anybody. And that's important, especially when you're a freshman or a sophomore in our level.”
But Alden and Cody are sure he will be prepared when the time comes, and he won’t be the first player from East Buchanan to go to Iowa. He’s always looked up to former NFL offensive tackle Robert Gallery, who made the jump from the Buccaneers to the Hawkeyes in the late 1990s and won the Outland Trophy in 2003.
"Last year, as a freshman, he never came off the field because he started on offense and defense, then he was our punter and was also our kicker,“ Alden said. ”As a freshman walking on to a high school football field, it says a lot to what he could accomplish at this point.
“I’m just happy as a football coach that he's going to be a part of our team for the next three years.”
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