As Tyler Cook nears his decision on where to attend college, it’s important for he and his family to feel connected with the players and coaching staff there. They certainly share that communion with Iowa after officially visiting the school this past weekend.
The whole trip served as a bonding experience for the Cooks and the Hawkeyes. A stop at head Coach Fran McCaffery’s house shed important light on the life as a basketball player at the school.
"When we went over there, the guys (Iowa players) were there and they were relaxed. I liked seeing that they were so relaxed at Fran’s house and were comfortable with he and his wife and his family. That said a lot," said Stephanie Cook, Tyler’s mother.
The St. Louis Chaminade High and Eagles power forward and his kin visited Iowa multiple times and as Stephanie Cook told us in this story from last week, they hoped the official visit would let Tyler know how he fit in with who could be his future teammates.
"He went out with them both nights and he liked them and thought they were a great group of guys," Stephanie said. "He had a lot in common with them and he liked how they worked hard like he does on the court and in the classroom."
The visit to Iowa went so well for the Cooks that they canceled an upcoming official to Arkansas, Stephanie said. The competition for her son’s services has boiled down to the two schools he’s officially visited – Iowa and Florida.
"We’re at the beginning of getting close to a decision," Stephanie said. "We’re going to mull it over and talk it over and do a pros-and-cons list for each school."
Stephanie said that McCaffery and assistant Sherman Dillard are scheduled for a in-home visit with the Cooks on Wednesday.
"We really wanted my other son to come on the official visit to meet the people at Iowa but he lost his keys," Stephanie said. "He will be here on Wednesday (for the in-home visit)."
Stephanie Cook said that Iowa answered all of her family’s questions this weekend. They were happy that Tyler was able to visit the journalism and business departments, two majors he’s considering.
"Everybody was really friendly," she said.
The Cooks attended their first college football game Saturday night when Iowa defeated Pittsburgh, 27-24, on a last-second field goal.
"The football game was electric," she said. "It was crazy and everybody there was so friendly. They were excited for the players and you could tell that they were fully engaged."
Rivals.com ranks Cook as a four-star recruit and the No. 82 overall player nationally in the 2016 Class. Iowa has three verbal commitments (Cordell Pemsl, Ryan Kriener, Jordan Bohannon) in the cycle and has one available scholarship at this time.