Hawkeye TEs Welcoming Opportunity

April 20, 2019

Written by Rob Howe

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Nate Wieting is living the story so many Hawkeyes before him did. In many ways, it’s the fabric of the program.

The Rockford (IL) Lutheran High product was overlooked as a recruit. He caught the eye of Iowa assistant Brian Ferentz, who invited him to walk on. He took the opportunity and ran with it.

Wieting (6-4, 250) heads into his senior season having contributed without much fanfare. He’s been playing, mostly as a blocking tight end, as T.J. Hockenson and Noah Fant grabbed the headlines at his position.

Even this spring, when talking about who will replace Hockenson and Fant, the attention has been focused on Shaun Beyer. He came to Iowa with more hype than did Wieting, and he retains the pedigree.

Make no mistake, however, Wieting plays a critical role in the tight end room. And that goes back to when Hockenson and Fant were involved.

Wieting is a natural leader and is willing to sacrifice self for team. That sets the example for young tight ends, including incoming freshmen Josiah Miamen and Sam LaPorta.

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Watch him talk about what it takes to succeed as an Iowa tight end:

Earlier this week, safety Geno Stone compared Beyer to Fant and Wieting to Hockenson. Wieting laughed.

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The Hawkeye position leader doesn’t expect he and Beyer to produce the 142 receptions, 2,093 yards and 27 touchdowns Fant and Hockenson did during the last two seasons. Those guys are expected to be the first two tight ends from the same school to chosen in the first round of the same draft.

Here’s Wieting talking about the comparisons and what this group of tight ends is working towards:

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Despite being younger than Fant and Hockenson, Wieting soaked up what he could from their successful college careers. And he showed potential to contribute in the passing game, catching a big 17-yarder that set up the winning score in the Pinstripe Bowl after the ’17 season.

Here Wieting talks about what he took from watching and working with Fant and Hockenson::

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