Pierschbacher Rolls to Alabama

Waterloo offensive lineman Ross Pierschbacher visited Alabama last fall. He took in a Crimson Tide game and Bama went on to win another national title, its third in four years. He then became the first player to commit to Iowa in its Class of 2014 in January, something that turned heads as Iowa was coming off a 4-8 season.

Then in February, Pierschbacher started to waver a little bit on the ‘strength’ of that verbal.

He took visits to Alabama and Stanford in recent weeks and released a statement Sunday night saying he was committing to Alabama, thanking Iowa for their time.

Iowa didn’t miss out for lack of trying:

As I wrote in late July, I don’t blame the kid for looking at all of his options or choosing to play for a college football dynasty unlike any other we’ve seen in decades. I also think that if Iowa weren’t coming off of a 4-8 season they would have stood a better chance here, given Kirk Ferentz’s track record of getting offensive linemen to the NFL; Iowa has more offensive linemen drafted since 2003 (13) than any other program.

Alabama is no slouch and of the kid wants to win a national title or four along the way, I sure as heck can’t argue with it. Again, it probably comes down to the same old thing in sports; if you are complaining it means the scoreboard must have gone the other way and for Iowa last year, that’s what happened. It was a brutal offense to watch and it could have left a mark.

I will add one more thing here…Pierschbacher has seemed confused since shortly after making his Iowa commitment. Almost as if he were looking for an excuse to back out of it. Again, this is how the game works and this is the last time a good player has a choice of where he is going to play until he’s been in the NFL at least four years. That would require getting into the NFL and then being good AND healthy enough for four years to be able to call your own shot.

So for most great high school football players, this is the one and only time they get to make a pick like this…so he’s in control and has decided to go play for Alabama..or at least he has for now. When you go back and read what he said in January at the time he committed (which you can here), you might want to jot this down in pencil, and not pen.

“Getting a chance to play in front of my home state and my community just felt right. I wanted to be a Hawkeye.”

Before you rag on Pierschbacher, remember this; he didn’t have an offer from Alabama when he committed back in January.

Regardless, there’s no positive way to spin it for Iowa. They lost out on someone they very much wanted and one of the highest rated linemen in the nation who comes from inside the Hawkeye State. That’s painful on a lot of fronts.

  • hawkguy76

    No surprise. Can’t blame the kid, almost anybody would pick going to Alabama over ANYBODY the country at this time. That being said, the Hawks are losing out on the rare local talent in its own backyard. Not a good sign for things to come.

  • holycowhawkeye

    Another embarrassment for Kirk and staff that they’ve earned by continuing to be the worst game-day coaches in America. Then again, Alabama ain’t Cedar Falls. You want culture shock, move from to Tuscaloosa. And have fun with good ole boy Nick Saban…

    I would agree that, if Iowa goes 8-4, 9-3, as it has the talent to do, there could be another change of heart in CF. But I won’t shed any tears. We all do what we think is best–coaches, recruits, fans–so good luck to the young man. As for the Hawkeyes, it’s next recruit in, and I’m fine with that.

    • westsidebill

      Won’t happen – once KF gets shunned then the door is bolted shut permanently.

  • dude

    the kid is a tool–don’t make a commitment if you aint gonna stick to it

    • westsidebill

      Coming from “dude”, that means a lot.

    • KDH

      If I was his parent, I would expect him to live up to his agreement with Iowa! It is always convenant to jump ship later when the grass may be greener, but that is not what a good Iowa guy does if he has class. If he was a true Hawkeye fan he would honor the program by joining it and making it better. Always A Hawkeye Fan!!!

      • westsidebill

        Really? You’ve obviously not been around many teenagers. Perhaps a step back into reality would better help you form your opinion of his decision.

  • Greg

    Maybe my expectations are low but the fact this kid even considered Iowa to begin with was a moral victory…. the ability of the coaches to produce NFL offensive lineman had to be a major factor so I will give them that. The fan loyalty and support also appears to be a major part of why he chose Iowa in the first place as well. I wish him luck and hope he dominates at Bama. Always great to see an Iowa kid succeed no matter where he goes.

  • HotinAZ

    He’d be a great catch for Iowa, NFL when graduates, starter his second year, All BIG by Junior year, but just wait until he sees this years OL recruit list at the Elite Alabama who has a stockpile of 5* kids accumulating. Stud in Iowa, reserve until his junior year with the tide. Changing your homesick mind for a third time won’t be as easily accepted RP. National championships have to be less valued if you didn’t play in the game.

  • Dustin

    Sucks. Probably would have started very soon in his career at Iowa. Not sure that will be the case at Bama although their OL recruiting hasn’t been as strong as some other positions over the last few years so he’ll have a chance. Just shows the lack of faith in the Iowa program moving forward from the best recruit in the state. On a side note, I would take an offer from Stanford if I got it. First class education and they produce some great nfl O Linemen of late.

    • westsidebill


      • Dustin

        Stanford…it’s in Palo Alto, CA. One of the best schools in the world. Beautiful campus. Much better football team than Iowa (lately). Andrew Luck went there. Look it up.

        • westsidebill

          No, smart guy, where would he have started early? Unlikely at Iowa and Stanford; even more unlikely at Alabama.

          • Dustin

            Sorry…your ‘Where?’ reference was a little vague. Couldn’t he start as a SO or RS FR at Iowa? Both Van Sloten and Boffeli are SRs, depending on where they wanted to slot him (tackle or guard). Think he would at least have a chance at beating out their current backups. But you’re right at Stanford and Alabama…both have fairly young OLines.

  • hawkeyes2012

    Ferentz is on thin Iice

  • John Kollmann

    What did you think was going to happen when he got the offer from Bama? Just look at this thru his eyes. You’re regarded as the best recruit at your position in the entire nation, and your choices come down to one school that has been a football juggernaut for the last 4 years or one that is clearly on the road leading to the swamp. Which would you pick?


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