By Pat Harty
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Kadyn Proctor from Southeast Polk is widely regarded as the top high school offensive lineman in the 2023 senior class, and the top recruit in Iowa regardless of position.
Veteran recruiting analyst Tom Lemming is among those who rank Proctor No. 1 in Iowa, and Lemming also gives Proctor five stars, which is the highest ranking on a five-star scale.
But Lemming said Sunday that the gap between the 6-foot-8, 335-pound Proctor and the player that Lemming ranks as the second best recruit from Iowa in the 2023 class – Iowa City High linebacker Ben Kueter – isn’t as wide as some might think.
When asked Sunday if Kueter was the second best prospect from Iowa in the 2023 class, Lemming said:
“Without a doubt. A matter of fact, I think he’s just as good a prospect to be honest with you. The other kid (Proctor) has great size and everything, but Kueter really surprised me how good he was. And he’s physical. He looks like a college senior already. He’s hit the weights pretty hard, but he makes a lot of plays and he’s got great length and size and everything.
“So, Ben would definitely be the number two guy.”
Kueter in addition to being a star in football is also a state champion wrestler and is committed to Iowa in that sport as well.
Iowa hasn’t had many two-sport athletes in football and wrestling, but athletes like Kueter are also extremely rare, especially coming from the state of Iowa.
Lemming ranks the 6-4, 225-pound Kueter as a high-four star prospect who has a chance to become a five-star recruit in football.
“If he has another fantastic year and keeps improving the way he did, he should be a five-star linebacker,” Lemming said. “He has everything you look for in a linebacker. They only problem is he plays in Iowa, and for a lot of people, it comes down to offers. They give guys stars based on who has offered them.”
Lemming, who has worked as a college football recruiting analyst since the late 1970s, said he bases his star rankings on extensive film evaluation, physical measurements and in-person interviews.
He said scholarship offers have little to no impact on his rankings.
Kueter made a verbal committment to the Iowa football team this past September, picking the Hawkeyes over scholarship offers from Iowa State, Minnesota and Missouri.
Lemming said Kueter’s decision to commit so early to his home-town school has kept Kueter from getting more offers.
“When you commit early, it cuts down on your star power,” Lemming said.
Lemming said Kueter would have offers from “coast to coast” if he wasn’t committed to Iowa, and if lived in a state that had more population.
Kueter plays linebacker in high school and is being recruited as a linebacker.
But where he ultimately plays in college could depend on how much bigger he gets as a heavyweight wrestler.
“Outside linebacker right now, but if he keeps growing, defensive end,” Lemming said of where he sees Kueter playing at Iowa. “He’s going to be a Big Ten player. If he stays healthy, I think he’s one of those no-brainer types. He’s a good catch.”