The Iowa sports information department released a statement from Kirk Ferentz today regarding Friday’s arrests of James Cleveland and Arvell Nelson. Ferentz and director of athletics Gary Barta are away on a cruise until March 3.
Here’s the statement from Ferentz:
“I was very disappointed to learn the news of the most recent incident involving two of our players. It’s especially disheartening since we made it such a major point of emphasis with our players since the end of last season. Both players will be suspended, indefinitely, until I have a chance to examine all the facts involved in the case.”
As I said in last night’s post, I’d be surprised if either Cleveland or Nelson ever put on an Iowa uniform again. I don’t know all the details of the arrest, but it doesn’t sound good.
On a lighter note, I’m in Indianapolis at the NFL Combine this weekend, trying to get a feel for what’s going to happen with Charles Godfrey, Ken Iwebema, Bryan Mattison and Mike Humpal in April’s draft. Seems like Godfrey is one scouts like because of his size and speed, but the consensus is that he is a very raw corner, having switched from safety before the 2006 season. The experience at both positions might actually help him in the draft. A year ago, Iwebema was pegged as a top d-line prospect but because of some injury problems, he’s dropped significantly down the board. Mattison and Humpal are the kind of blue-collar guys who’ll probably work their way onto an NFL roster, be it through the draft of free agency. I expect Godfrey to be a late Day 1 or early Day 2 pick, and Iwebema probably will go later in Day 2.
Here’s food for thought that was tossed about by some reporters in the press box last fall. Who on Iowa’s 2007 roster, besides the outgoing seniors who will get a chance this season, will be professional prospects in the future? Cleveland might have been one. DJK? Jake Christensen? A.J. Edds? Adrian Clayborn? Mitch King? I’d say at this point, the safest bet is Seth Olsen, who’ll get a shot after this season. But, when it’s all said and done, I think Bryan Bulaga could be a first-round draft pick.
That might be one indicator as to why Iowa has struggled the past two seasons. Look at all the NFL talent the Hawkeyes had on the field, particularly on the offensive and defensive lines, during their run of success from 2002-2005. The past two seasons … not so much.