Listen to Shaun Beyer, you hear excitement in his voice. The picture of him reaching his dream of playing college football is clearing up.
Sunday, the Cedar Rapids Kennedy senior learned that Northern Iowa had a full-ride scholarship offer on the table to him. That followed productive camps at Iowa, Kansas State and Northern Illinois.
The 6-foot-5, 200-pound Beyer also reports scholarship offers from Illinois State, South Dakota State and Western Illinois. That’s four solid FCS offers with positive feedback from several FBS schools. Not bad for a kid essentially off the D-I prospect radar at this time last year.
"I’m definitely having a good time during the recruiting process. I’ve been told by a lot of the coaches to not get stressed out about getting offered sooner or later. I’m just trying to have fun with the whole thing. It’s been working out so far. The camps have been going good. I can’t really complain," he said.
Beyer caught 35 passes for 471 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior tight end. He also led the Cougars with 73 tackles from his outside linebacker spot.
Many of the recruiting services aren’t recognizing Beyer. Rivals, Scout and 247 do not have him rated. In layman’s terms, he’s a no-star.
As we know, that can change quickly. He’ll most likely have stars put on him when the next evaluation period happens and they see his offers.
For Beyer, the rankings he can’t control. He can show up at camps and convince the people that matter he can play college football.
Beyer camped with Iowa on June 7. He returned to Iowa City this weekend for the recruiting tailgate. He was one of the few among the 20 or so without an offer, likely indicating he’s firmly on the board.
Despite the ever-increasing pace of recruiting, the Hawkeyes still approach a lot of their in-state recruiting deliberately. Class of ’15 signees Nick Wilson and Garret Jansen come to Iowa City after receiving offers right up against signing day in early February.
"I’ve been in contact with Coach (Reese) Morgan quite a bit and Coach (LeVar) Woods. When I was at the tailgater, at the end, Coach Morgan said that he likes me, Coach Woods likes me, Coach (Kirk) Ferentz really likes me. He said be patient with them and let the process go on and that good things are coming," Beyer said.
The vagueness of Morgan’s message leave Beyer somewhat in the dark. He also understands the process and knows he can’t control what’s out of his hands. He just needs to keep striving to reach his goals.
"I think maybe what he meant by be patient is maybe they’ll look at me this year during the season and see how I’ve progressed from last season, getting stronger, bigger, faster and all that, and maybe recruit me from then on," he said.
Beyer said he put his best foot forward at Iowa’s camp on June 7.
"I think I opened Coach Woods’ eyes a little bit," Beyer said of the team’s new tight ends coach. "I don’t think he thought I was as good as I performed that day. I had never been in contact with him much and he called me that next day and wanted to tell me about their meeting they had about the camp. And we’ve been in contact on Twitter, DMing ever since. So, I think he likes me."
Beyer camped at Iowa State earlier this month and received positive feedback. He said out of about 180 campers, he was one of roughly 10 players asked to stay and talk to head coach Paul Rhoads following the event.
"He said basically that he wants to see how I do this season before they would put an offer on the table. I don’t know if it’s throughout the whole season but maybe watch a few of my first games and maybe talk more about an offer," Beyer said.
Kansas State also played host to Beyer at a prospect camp. The Wildcats followed up with Kennedy Coach (Brian) White and said they would like Beyer, who spoke with head coach Bill Snyder at the previous camp, at their elite camp later this summer.
"I impressed them a little bit," Beyer said.
Northern Illinois is picking up it’s interest in Beyer after a strong camp there this summer. He’s building a relationship with head coach Rod Carey after first meeting him at the event in DeKalb.
"He said they’re only offering one tight end. He said they would offer but they want to get to know me better because it was the first time I had been in contact with the head coach. I think he kind of wants to get to know me a little before putting an offer on the table. They said they definitely want me to come down for a game day visit in the fall. He said if they were ready to offer they would then," Beyer said.
The FBS schools see him as a tight end. South Dakota State likes Beyer at linebacker and defensive end. UNI is torn between tight end and D-End.
The Panthers see something special in Beyer. A full scholarship offer shows that.
"I got to talk to Coach (Mark) Farley (Sunday) and he said that I for sure have a full scholarship if I want to go play there for him. So, that was pretty exciting to hear. They had offered me but it wasn’t clear on if it was a full scholarship or not but he made that clear at the camp. That was pretty cool," Beyer said.
Beyer is scheduled to be at two upcoming camps. He’s got Western Illinois (Friday) and Illinois State (July 6).