IOWA CITY, Iowa – Frank Darby’s on-and-off relationship with the Iowa football team is now on again.
Darby’s high school coach told all-hawkeyes.com on Wednesday that Darby has qualified academically and would consider signing with Iowa should a scholarship become available.
“The issue is scholarship numbers,” said Robert Hampton, head football coach at Lincoln High School in Jersey City. “We’re still trying to figure out if there is room for him.”
A Division I football team is allowed to have 85 players on scholarship. Iowa was close to that number after singing 24 players in its 2016 recruiting class.
However, college football rosters are fluid this time of year. Three players have left the Iowa team just recently, including senior cornerback Maurice Fleming. He wants to transfer to a school where he has a chance to start as a graduate transfer.
Defensive back Omar Truitt and receiver Andre Harris also left the team this spring. Harris is looking to transfer to a different school, according to Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz.
Darby previously was committed to Iowa’s 2016 recruiting class, but he didn’t sign a national letter of intent, because at the time in February, Darby still hadn’t achieved a qualifying test score on the freshman entrance exam.
Darby has since qualified academically, according to Hampton.
Ferentz also apparently has changed his stand on whether Darby should attend prep school for one semester before enrolling at Iowa.
That is what caused Darby to back off from his commitment to Iowa in late April.
“He’s qualified, so the prep school thing is out,” Hampton said.
Darby attended Iowa’s spring game on April 23rd at Kinnick Stadium, but his relationship with the Hawkeyes cooled after that. Darby backed out of his commitment before leaving Iowa City and seemed more interested in attending a school on the East Coast.
He visited Rutgers about a week after his visit to Iowa City.
The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Darby was named the player of the year in his county after catching 35 passes for 957 yards and 10 touchdowns as a senior last fall.