Jacardia Wright stopped at Iowa in November for its final home game against Purdue. He enjoyed his time at the school and learning about the program.
It led to the Decatur (IL) St. Teresa running back returning Sunday for a junior day. The visit expanded his knowledge of the Hawkeyes.
Wright enjoyed seeing more of the facilities and his extensive conversations with the Iowa players and staff, including his first talk with new running backs coach Derrick Foster.
“We really connected tight, and he made me feel like I was at home,” Wright said.
Wright tweeted that he received an Iowa scholarship offer on Saturday. He said that was just to let everyone know.
“I had an Iowa offer since my sophomore year,” he said of the opportunity extended in August of 2016.
Colleges view Wright (6-0, 205) as a well-rounded athlete. Some see him at safety while others project him as a running back. Iowa falls into the latter category.
“That’s my preferred position,” he said.
In a day and age of spread out, pass-happy offenses, Wright appreciates the Hawkeyes’ commitment to moving the ball on the ground.
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“They’re running 70 percent of the game, honestly, and that’s what I really like about how they use their running backs. It’s all downhill power where I come from, in the offensive scheme that I’m running right now,” he said.
The Iowa coaches provided a clear picture of what it’s like playing in the program. Wright connected with what he heard.
“The overall message from the staff to me was that if you’re willing to work, they’re going to build you. If you come to Iowa, it’s all business. That’s what I really like about it. They tell you up front that it’s not going to be the easiest place to go. They’re going to push the players,” he said.
Wright has earned all-state honors the last two seasons. As a sophomore he rushed for 2,485 yards and 39 touchdowns, and added 2,124 and 30 last fall. As a three-year starter, he has 6,212 and 85 on the ground, averaging 10.5 yards per carry.
Central Michigan, Western Michigan and Northern Illinois also have offered scholarships to Wright. He’s been hearing frequently from Illinois, Purdue, Michigan State, Oklahoma State and Wisconsin as well. He was set to visit Southern Illinois on Tuesday.
Wright, who says he has a steady stream of coaches messaging him, isn’t rushing through the recruiting process. As of now, he’s planning on waiting until after his senior season to commit.
“I’m just playing it by ear right now. I’m still young and it’s all coming fast and hitting me in my face. I’m trying to focus on my season and hopefully get the state championship my senior year. Then I’ll look into the recruiting a lot more,” he said.
Academics will play a hey role in Wright’s decision. He’s expecting to major Business.
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Alex Padilla, a 6-1/190 signal caller from Englewood (Cherry Creek), Colorado, verbally committed to Iowa on Thursday.
“I just want to see a good connection with me and the coaches. Then, it’s what everybody is looking for, will I be able to play? Where do I fit in at? Obviously I need to be somewhere where I can get a great education and people around that can help me do well in the classroom,” he said.
Wright said he will attend the Opening regional combine in Ohio during May. He also plans on stopping at some college camps during the summer.
Rivals and 247 do not yet have a ranking for Wright. Both networks list him as a safety.
Here’s a look at Wright’s junior highlights: