The college football career of one of the most highly touted members of the Iowa’s 2014 recruiting class is taking a detour.
Running back Markel Smith, who rushed for more than 7,000 yards during his career at St. John Vianney High School in St. Louis, will enroll at a Connecticut prep school this fall.
Milford Academy Coach Bill Chaplick confirmed Wednesday that Smith will enroll at the Connecticut prep school and will play football there this fall.
The decision will allow Smith to fulfill academic requirements needed to join the Hawkeye program in January.
Chapick declined further comment beyond indicating that he expects Smith to be a part of the program there in the fall with plans of enrolling at Iowa for the spring semester.
The Milford program has produced running backs that fill three of the top eight single-season rushing totals in Hawkeye history, Shonn Greene and Fred Russell. Greene holds Iowa’s single-season rushing record while Russell owns the fifth- and eighth-best single-season totals.
Current Hawkeye defensive lineman Dean Tsopanides also competed for Milford before signing with Iowa.
The 5-foot-10, 210-pound Smith piled up 7,144 rushing yards in high school, setting a Missouri state single-game rushing record with 541 yards on 42 carries during a game during his junior season.
Smith ran for 2,416 yards and 33 touchdowns as a senior at St. Vianney, where he also caught nine passes for 188 yards and two scores last season.