Commit Capsules: Jordan Canzeri

February 15, 2011

Written by Jon Miller

Jordan Canzeri
Running Back
Troy High School
Troy, New York
5-9/177
Scout.com Profile | Rivals.com Profile

OFFERS: Iowa, UConn and Villanova. For what seems to be an insider account of Canzeri’s road to Iowa, click on this link and go to the fourth post. Pretty amazing stuff.

STAR GAZING: Scout.com rates Canzeri as a three star (out of five) prospect where Rivals.com has him as at two stars.

QUOTABLE: “Jordan is just a really intriguing guy…Some way, some how his tape ended up on my desk about 12, 14 days ago, somewhere in that ballpark a week ago Sunday, and the obvious question is, who is recruiting this guy? And I looked at it and thought who is recruiting this guy and why is it only the list that was on my desk at that point? And you know the only obvious thing was size, I guess that was probably the thing and we made a mistake already on Danny Woodhead and we are not going to make another one. That was part of the conversation with Jordan. He was worried about his size, we blew that one on Danny Woodhead, 177 pounds when he went to Chadron State and we did not want to blow it again. You have to go by what you see on tape and the passion he plays has, with the toughness he plays with and the determination, that really sold us. We told his dad we are not going to ask him to rebound. We just want him to run the football. So we are really excited about him.” –Kirk Ferentz on Jordan Canzeri, 2/2/11

JON’S TAKE: Out of every prospect Iowa signed this year, Canzeri’s highlight reel was the most dynamic. It looks like he was playing against 8th graders the way he blows through holes at a full head of steam. You absolutely have to watch the tape above. If you don’t, you are doing yourself a disservice.

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People like to play the comparison game and his tape immediately reminded me of the tape I saw on Brandon Wegher…men against boys level highlights. Canzeri has some speed, he has some toughness and as Coach Ferentz said above, he plays with a high degree of passion. It was interesting to hear Coach Ferentz bring up the name Danny Woodhead in the signing day press conference.

Woodhead played high school football at North Platte High School in Nebraska, and he didn’t have any high major offers. Schools felt he was too small. He enrolled at Chadron State, a Division II college in Northwest Nebraska. He was the first full ride athletic scholarship player there in school history. As a true freshman, he ran for over 1,800 yards, over 1,700 as a sophomore and then over 2,700 as a junior. His 2,756 yards as junior broke Barry Sanders’ all division single season rushing record. For his career, he averaged more than 190 yards per game on the ground and went over 200 yards in 19 of his 39 career games. When he left college, he had more rushing yards than any other player in college football history at any level. If you watch the NFL, you see him playing a solid role for the New England Patriots, now at 5-7, 200 pounds.

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Iowa has never been and likely never will be a cookie cutter football program. They come in all shapes and sizes at Iowa, and the staff has made its mark spotting talent and developing that talent. Canzeri’s tape screamed ‘PLAYER’ at Ferentz, and Iowa Recruiting Coordinator Eric Johnson told the Polk County I-Club that Canzeri was someone Ferentz took an immediate interest in after seeing his tape. You can tell that from his quote above.

His tape, combined with Ferentz’s enthusiasm, should really get Hawkeye fans excited as to what this kid might be able to do at Iowa. If his skills can translate to the next level, and it will certainly be a big jump, Iowa will find a role for him. I don’t know if that will be next year or not, however. Then again, if he can make an impact in August with regards to special teams (namely the return game, as Iowa will have openings on the kickoff and punt return teams), that might be his ticket to the field early, which has been an Iowa tradition.

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High school honors – – All-Area punt returner his junior year . . . New York Section 2 Class A Player of the Year junior year . . . New York Section 2 Southeast All-Star Division Player of the Year junior year . . . Third Team All-State junior year . . . Offensive MVP of the State Semi-final game senior year . . . Offensive MVP of the Regional Playoffs senior year . . . First Team All-State Running Back senior year. . . Career – – helped prep squad to state championship game in 2010, compiling a 12-1 record, as well as a 9-1 record in his junior year . . . team captain as a senior . . . rushed for 1,252 yards in junior year . . . had 2,048 yards rushing, 33 rushing TD’s, 3 special teams TD’s in senior season . . . was the first running back to rush for 1,000 yards in back to back seasons in his school history, also the first running back to rush for over 2,000 yards in one season in his school’s history . . . set a school record for most rushing TD’s (33) and overall TD’s (36) in a single season . . . earned varsity letters in football (2) and track (4).

Personal – – Born 2/18/93 . . . sociology/criminal justice interest . . . NYSPHSAA Scholar Athlete Team Award senior year . . . parents are Brian and Regina Canzeri . . . high school coach was Jack Burger.

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