Growing up in Indiana, Ben Skowronek knew all about Dallas Clark. The latter helped the Indianapolis Colts win Super Bowl XLI.
Clark won the Mackey Award as college football’s top tight end during his final season at Iowa in 2002. On Saturday, Skowronek visited the Hawkeyes.
Iowa offered Skowronek a scholarship as a wide receiver this winter. Things have changed.
"They see me as a tight end now and believe I will develop into an NFL tight end in the future. That really stood out to me. They told me the NFL loves tight ends from Iowa – Tight End U. They mentioned (Clark) a lot," the 6-foot-4, 200-pounder from Fort Wayne Homestead High said.
Skowronek also reports offers from Ball State, Boston College, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Eastern Michigan, Indiana, Miami (Ohio), N.C. State, Northwestern, Ohio, Purdue, Toledo and Western Michigan. Michigan State, Nebraska, Notre Dame and Penn State are among a group of schools showing interest.
Skowronek, who caught 42 passes for 841 yards and 12 touchdowns as a junior, has set his commitment announcement for June 7. He said he’d likely release a Top 5 next month.
Skowronek has visited quite a few colleges in preparation for his pledge. Northwestern, Vanderbilt, Wisconsin and Notre Dame were among his stops. He added Iowa to his list on Saturday.
"The visit was great. I got to spend a lot of time around the coaches. Iowa stacked up great. I’m definitely very interested in possibly playing for Iowa," he said.
Skowronek said he spent a lot of time talking with his lead recruiter, assistant Jim Reid.
"He was telling me about academics and the culture of the program. I learned Iowa is a blue-collar football team. They out work the other teams. The strength program is unbelievable," he said.
Skowronek watched a Hawkeye spring practice.
"It was very competitive and high energy," he said.
Skowronek is considering a Business major in college.