Five prospects who will be impacted by Iowa-Penn State

The biggest game in terms of rankings this weekend in college football is Penn State visiting Iowa on Saturday afternoon. While these two Big Ten programs don’t cross paths too often on the recruiting trail there are definitely some elite prospects who will be in attendance or watching where the outcome could have a big impact on their recruitment.

Here’s a look at five of the biggest names:

One of only a few crossover prospects who has an offer from both Iowa and Penn State and who will be at the game this weekend, Gilbert will be watching both sides closely. The three-star defensive end from Indianapolis (Ind.) Cathedral is probably a little closer with the Nittany Lions’ staff right now but a convincing win by Iowa could move the Hawkeyes even higher up his list.

Gilbert is always around the ball and he’s always making plays and he has the ability to play at either Big Ten program and many others as well.


One of the best offensive linemen in the 2023 class, Green has a top list of schools which includes Iowa and the Hawkeyes have seemed to gain ground in recent months. Oklahoma could be considered the team to beat and Notre Dame and others are also high but this could be a huge step in the right direction for the Hawkeyes with an impressive performance this weekend.

It feels like there is a long way to go in Green’s recruitment but the Hawkeyes have been making more of an impression in recent months.


A 2024 four-star linebacker from Largo, Fla., Hayes is one of the few prospects who is being recruited by both Penn State and Iowa early in his recruitment. It has to be a great sign for the Hawkeyes that Hayes is making the trip to Iowa City this early in his recruitment and he will be rewarded by seeing both teams in this matchup.

It’s too early to name any front-runners but Iowa, Florida State and Miami have made the biggest impression so far.


Easily the most important prospect visiting Iowa again this weekend, Nwankpa has a final three of the Hawkeyes, Ohio State and Notre Dame. All three remain serious contenders to land his commitment but in recent months, Iowa has really made up huge strides in his recruitment. Nwankpa and his family have been to campus and gotten all their questions answered.

Nwankpa and defensive coordinator/secondary coach Phil Parker have developed a strong relationship and the development of players for the NFL is big as well. One pitch to Nwankpa is about NIL as well, that he would be the face of the entire state if he stays home and that could be compelling to watch.


Alabama, Iowa, Iowa State, Notre Dame and Ohio State are five schools that stand out early to the 2023 five-star offensive tackle but he’s far from making a decision. Proctor has been to Iowa before this season and while he’s said Nwankpa, his high school teammate, making a decision won’t affect his own commitment it certainly wouldn’t hurt to have him at a particular school.

The Buckeyes and the Irish might have the slightest edge right now but a dominant showing upfront – and Proctor will be watching closely – could go a long way to swing things in the Hawkeyes’ favor.

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