Ohio State receiver Kaleb Brown commits to Iowa
By Pat Harty
IOWA CITY, Iowa – If you could pick two Big Ten teams from where to get help on the football field, Michigan and Ohio State would probably make the most sense.
Kirk Ferentz apparently thinks so as he has turned to the Big Ten’s two traditional powerhouse programs to help jumpstart his struggling offense.
The latest addition is Ohio State receiver Kaleb Brown, who announced his commitment to Iowa on Thursday after having visited the Iowa campus earlier this week.
Brown, a former four-star recruit from St. Rita High School in Chicago, has four seasons of eligibility, and he joins an Iowa program that desperately needs help at receiver.
Iowa only completed seven touchdown passes last season, and only had four receivers on scholarship this spring.
Iowa also finished last season ranked 130th out of 131 FBS teams in total offense.
Brown will now have a chance to play with former Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara, who transferred to Iowa at the start of the spring semester.
McNamara led Michigan to the 2021 Big Ten title, and to the college playoff that season as the starting quarterback.
He then lost the starting position to J.J. McCarthy early last season and ultimately decided to transfer.
Former Michigan tight end Erick All also has transferred to Iowa.
All had over 400 receiving yards during the 2021 season.
Brown, meanwhile, was a coveted recruit coming out of high school. He had scholarship offers from some of the top programs in the country, including Alabama, Michigan and Notre Dame.
Iowa tried to recruit Brown in high school and was in on him early.
But he couldn’t resist playing for the Buckeyes, who traditionally rank among the best teams in the country, and usually are loaded with talented receivers.
Brown was ranked by 247Sports as the No. 2 recruit in Illinois as a senior, and the nation’s No. 8 wide receiver.
He missed much of his senior season due to injury, but returned in time to help St. Rita make a playoff run.
As a freshman at Ohio State in 2022, Brown played in four games and had just one catch during the season, which came in a lopsided win over Iowa in the fourth quarter.
That would be the last game in which the 5-foot-10, 197-pound Brown played for the Buckeyes.
Kirk Ferentz said at the open practice to conclude spring drills on April 22 that Iowa would be pursuing receivers in the transfer portal.
And now less than a month later, Iowa has landed a receiver from Ohio State.
Only time and performance will determine if this addition is a success.
But for now, it’s a sign of hope for an Iowa offense that has become a national laughingstock under offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz, who is Kirk Ferentz’s son.
The addition of Brown will undoubtedly excite Hawkeye fans, and it shows that despite Iowa’s recent woes on offense, that Kirk Ferentz and his assistants can still convince high-level receivers to play for them.