Cyclone Nation's Sweet 16

Missouri prep Will Paul rates high on CN list

Cyclone Nation's Bill Seals and Steve Deace release a top 16 list of high school recruits that are seriously considering or have already committed to Iowa State.

1. Aaron Brant, OL/DL
6-7, 285, 5.2
Dubuque (Wahlert)

Brant enters his senior season as Iowa's top ranked rising prospect for the class of 2003 according to Tom Lemming of Prep Football Report. He played a huge part in Wahlert's offense, which led the Mississippi Valley Conference last season for the first time in 18 years ago with more than 3,700 total yards. Committed to Iowa State over Iowa, Kansas State, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Stanford, Michigan, Northwestern, Missouri, Colorado, Wisconsin and Harvard.

2. Will Paul, TE
6-4, 255, 4.59
(Parkway West HS) Ballwin, MO.

He's an outstanding two-way player who is being recruited by some schools as a pass-catching tight end and other schools are recruiting him as a defensive end. On film, he is outstanding on both sides of the football. A consensus top-100 national pick and is rated as the number two tight end overall by TheInsiders. Paul, who runs a 4.59 40 time, has more than 30 national programs. List includes the likes of Clemson, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, LSU, UCLA and Iowa State. Cyclone staff is in the mix with Paul and high school teammate Will Meyers.

3. Tony Hills, TE
6-6, 260, 4.7
(Elsik HS) Houston, TX

A four-star recruit by TheInsiders and fifth-ranked player at his position, Hills may be the very best blocking tight end in the entire country. He is also one of the most talented athletes in the country. At 6-foot-6, 240 pounds, Hills has run a 4.7 time in the 40. Hills, who caught 13 passes as a high school junior, currently has at least 20 scholarship offers from top programs around the country including Colorado, Texas, SMU, Baylor, Kansas, Florida, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Iowa, Iowa State, LSU, Arizona, Arizona State and Washington. Attends same high school as current Cyclone offensive lineman Gerald Johnson.

4. Todd Blythe, WR
6-5, 200, 4.55
Indianola

A four-year varsity starter. Named all-state after junior season. Had 54 receptions for 790 yards and eight touchdowns as a wide receiver. On defense, Blythe had seven interceptions from his defensive back position. Scholarship offers from Iowa State and Iowa, but was expected to commit to the Cyclones by the time this is published. Also recruited by Texas, Stanford, Notre Dame, Michigan, Harvard, Kansas State, and Wisconsin.

5. Caleb Berg, S
6-2, 190, 4.6
(Heartland HS) Henderson, NE

One of the top players in ISU's padded camp, Berg displayed great speed in pass coverage and made some crushing hits in run support. Was also a standout at Nebraska's summer camp and will likely receive an offer from the Huskers. Berg, a two-way player that competed at quarterback for the first time last fall, helped lead his team to within one game of a playoff berth last season. After finishing with 62 total tackles, Berg racked up various post season honors. He was named a first-team all-district defensive back and was a second-team player on the Grand Island Independent all-area team. The Omaha World Herald and Lincoln Journal Star named him as an honorable mention selection on their all-state teams.

6. Taylor Schrage, ATH
6-2, 190, 4.6
Aplington Parkersburg

Taylor follows a long line of divison prospects hailing from small town high school Aplington-Parkersburg. He is projected to be a linebacker, but he could also be lined up at safety. In leading A-P to a 12-1 record and Class 1-A state championship last season, Schrage, a first-team all-stater, recorded 73 tackles, two sacks and two interceptions as well as a pair of defensive touchdowns. As a running back, he cleared the 1,700-yard plateau on 253 carries and scored 28 touchdowns overall. Scholarship offers from Iowa State, Kansas State and Iowa. Also being recruited by Nebraska, Wisconsin and Colorado.

7. Alex Woodley, RB
5-10, 180, 4.4
(Mesquite HS) Mesquite, TX

Reins from state champion Mesquite High, Woodley may be the surprise running back in the State of Texas this year. He averaged close to seven yards per carry in the Mesquite wishbone offense last year and should be able to improve on that this year on another powerful high school football team. In all, he rushed for 408 yards on only 64 carries with five touchdowns. Woodley, who has run 40 times in the range of 4.34-4.49, attended padded camp in Ames, but had his summer cut short with an ankle injury. TheInsiders has him as a three-star recruit and the 80th ranked running back nationally. Texas A&M, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ohio State and Iowa State are his favorites.

8. Milan Moses, WR
6-3, 185, 4.5
Waterloo (East)

Started at quarterback as a sophomore before moving on to play wide receiver in 2001, Moses recorded 27 catches for 562 yards and five touchdowns last fall. The brother of former Cyclone receiver J.J. Moses, Milan became a favorite target of fellow commit Bret Meyer's during padded camp this summer. Committed to Iowa State over interest from Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri.

9. Will Meyers, S/LB
6-0, 195, 4.5
(Parkway West HS) Ballwin, MO

The safety-outside linebacker prospect is a very good athlete who plays on both sides of the football. He carries a 4.31 GPA in college prep courses and he has already scored an impressive 32 on his ACT. Meyers rushed for 595 yards on 109 carries, while catching nine passes for 93 yards with 10 total touchdowns. Defensively, he recorded 89 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, six sacks, four fumble recoveries and four interceptions. Meyers returned two of those interceptions for touchdowns, including one that spanned a school-record 100 yards. Iowa State, Kansas, Indiana and Miami (Ohio) have offered scholarships.

10. Brandon Cook, OL
6-7, 320, 5.2
Garner-Hayfield

A first-team all-state selection by the Iowa Newspaper Association and Des Moines Register, Cook anchored an offense last season that recorded the third-highest rushing yards in school history. Cook will likely start inside at offensive guard, but could move outside to tackle later in his career. Committed to Iowa State over interest from Iowa, Kansas State, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Missouri, and Northwestern.

11. Anthony Walker, OL
6-3, 295, 5.2
(Northeast HS) Oklahoma City, OK

Turned Cyclone coaching staff onto him with an outstanding summer camp in Ames. Walker mainly played on the offensive side of the ball at camp and is a big-time prospect along the interior line. Walker is a big, strong, quick athlete who will play on both sides of the line for Northeast High School in 2002. Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Kansas State and Iowa State are among the top programs recruiting him, although the Cyclones have been the only one to offer a scholarship.

12. John Tjaden, OL
6-6, 280, 5.0
Mason City

Three-year varsity starter. Named all-conference and honorable mention all-state as a junior. A top prospect in Iowa and proved it by performing well at ISU's summer padded camp. Committed to the Cyclones over recruiting interest from Nebraska, Iowa, Stanford, Colorado, Notre Dame, Kansas State, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri, Illinois, Kansas and Minnesota.

13. Bret Meyer, QB
6-3, 180, 4.7
Atlantic

Meyer threw for 1,570 yards and 17 touchdowns as a junior. He took over the starting job as a sophomore in 2000 he passed for 1,300 yards and 13 touchdowns. After throwing 13 interceptions as a first-year starter in 2000, Meyer cut that number down significantly last fall and demonstrated more confidence as a pocket passer. Committed to Iowa State over interest from Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Penn State and Wisconsin.

14. Nate Mechaelsen, QB
6-3, 185, 4.6
(Northeast Hamilton HS) Blairsburg

Passed for 925 yards and 16 touchdowns on 47-of-84 completions last fall. Even more impressive was the fact he threw just two interceptions. Like many of the quarterbacks ISU recruits, Mechaelsen posses the ability to throw both in the pocket and rolling out. Mechaelsen has already broken his school's single-season and career touchdown marks. Committed to Iowa State over interest from Iowa, Kansas, Wisconsin and UNI.

15. Tom Schmeling, OL
6-3, 280, 5.2
Atlantic

Schmeling, who is projected as a guard or center, was deemed one of the huge surprises in ISU's summer camp and earned an offer with his solid play. Committed to Iowa State over interest from Nebraska, Kansas, Kansas State, Iowa, Southern Illinois, Eastern Illinois and UNI.

16. Kurtis Taylor, ATH
6-3, 200, 4.7
Fort Dodge

Recruited as an athlete, Taylor flashes the ability to play a number of different positions. He played both wide receiver and weak-side linebacker last fall for the Dodgers, but has shown the capability to play quarterback and defensive end as well. He will become the third Fort Dodge senior in three years to sign with the Cyclones, joining offensive lineman Seth Zehr (2002) and Nik Moser (2001). Committed to Iowa State over interest from Iowa and UNI.

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