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Xavier Foster, Family Handling Pressure of Process

July 23, 2019

Written by Rob Howe

Hawkeye Nation

IOWA CITY, Iowa – If you’re a parent, you know that sometimes you’re among the last to know. DaJuan Foster can relate.

The father of highly-regarded 2020 in-state recruit Xavier Foster was caught off guard when his son told the Des Moines Register earlier this month that he was preparing to trim his list of prospective schools to three.

“I was as shocked as everyone else,” DaJuan said.

Father and son talked about it briefly on the way to the gym at the Elite 32 tournament in Atlanta, where the interview took place. DaJuan didn’t see the story until Xavier left on a vacation from which he returned Monday night.

“I’m in the dark like everyone else, to be honest. We will talk about it (Tuesday) evening if he’s home when I get home from work,” DaJuan said.

The story from Atlanta put Iowa and Iowa State fans on high alert as Xavier said he’d be cutting his list to a trio of programs within a week. The Hawkeyes, Cyclones and other top schools hope on making the cut for the five-star big man.

“I don’t know what his top schools are. Like I said, we never discussed it in depth. We had a quick conversation and then I’m reading in the Des Moines Register that he had a Top 3,” DaJuan said.

Baylor, UCLA, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri and USC are among the other schools pursuing Xavier. Rivals and 247 both see him as a Top 50 recruit in his class.

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Iowa and Iowa State have requested that Xavier (7-0, 225) come back to campus. He’s visited each school multiple times, including officials to both places.

Xavier stepped back from the recruiting crush last week when he joined family on vacation in Minnesota. The group included former Hawkeye football center and current North Dakota State offensive line coach A.J. Blazek.

Xavier’s mother, Kristi (Fetter) Foster, is the sister of Kyla (Fetter) Blazek, A.J.’s wife. Their father, Mark Fetter, played running back at Iowa in the 1970s.

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Coming off his vacation, Foster’s recruitment could remain in the background for awhile. Next Tuesday, July 30, he’s set for a surgery placing a pin his foot from an injury suffered last month.

“We’re not sure yet how long he’ll be out. I think 6-8 weeks, but that’s not certain,” DaJuan said.

The motivation for Xavier potentially trimming his list comes from the constant questions regarding his decision. Coaches and media also wear him out. All of it can weight heavily on a teenager.

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“I give Xavier space to be as normal of a kid as possible. With him and I running around (to basketball events), there are things mom knows I don’t, and things I know she doesn’t,” DaJuan said.

“Communication is on a need to know basis with teens. If I don’t ask, he ain’t telling. And I’m fine because if it’s important or dangerous someone else will tell me. Everyone hammers him about his decision. I leave it alone.”

In helping to insulate Xavier as much as possible from outside stress, his parents take on more of it.

“I think he’s handling things well. He just goes with it. I’m certain mom and I are feeling the pressure a bit more than he is,” DaJuan said.

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