Editor's note: One in a series of looks at the Iowa football program’s 2018 recruiting class, position by position.
Samson Evans, 6-1, 205, Crystal Lake, Illinois (Prairie Ridge HS)
Calvin Lockett, 6-2, 170, Largo, Fla. (Largo HS)
Nico Ragaini, 6-0, 185, East Haven, Conn. (Avon Old Farms Prep)
Tyrone Tracy, 6-0, 187, Camby, Ind. (Indianapolis Decatur Central)
SAMSON EVANS: Will begin his Hawkeye career as a receiver after quarterbacking Prairie Ridge High School to the last two Illinois Class 6A state championships. … Was named Illinois’ Gatorade player of the year last fall in addition to earning state player of the year recognition from the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times and the Champaign News-Gazette. … Two-time first-team all-state selection and two-time Northwest Herald player of the year, earning all-area honors three times. … Played quarterback, receiver and linebacker in addition to returning kicks and punts during his four-year varsity career at Prairie Ridge. … His 6,386 career rushing yards ranks seventh in Illinois prep history … Rushed for 2,092 yards and 38 touchdowns in addition to passing for 610 yards and throwing eight touchdown passes as a senior. … Ran for 2,211 yards and 42 touchdowns as a junior, throwing for 814 yards and 14 scores in the first of back-to-back 14-0 seasons. … As a sophomore, gained 1,929 yards and returned three kicks for touchdowns … Scored on three kick returns in addition to running for 111 yards as a freshman.
CALVIN LOCKETT: Caught 13 passes for 425 yards as a senior, earning all-state honors at Largo High School while playing wide receiver and defensive back. … Recorded 369 receiving yards on 11 catches as a junior and 256 yards on eight receptions during his sophomore season. … His high school coach at Largo was former Hawkeye Marcus Paschal.
NICO RAGAINI: Established a Connecticut state record with 222 career receptions during his four seasons at Notre Dame High School in East Haven, Connecticut, where his 3,345 receiving yards ranked second in state history to former NFL player Aaron Hernandez. … Recorded 46 catches for 923 yards and nine touchdowns last fall while earning all-New England honors at Avon Old Farms Prep School. … Was a three-time first-team all-state selection at East Haven Notre Dame, where he caught 59 passes for 988 yards as a senior. … Also played defensive back in high school, recording 41 tackles and intercepting two passes during his senior season. … Caught 64 passes for 903 yards as a junior, 71 passes for 1,036 yards as a sophomore and 28 passes for 418 yards as a freshman. … Also competed in indoor track and lacrosse in high school, earning all-state honors in both. … Holds the school record for career assists and points in lacrosse.
TYRONE TRACY: Named the Gatorade player of the year in Indiana for his work as a senior at Decatur Central Indianapolis. … Lettered four years at the varsity level, competing as a running back, wide receiver and defensive back while helping his team to a 35-8 record. … Established a school record for receiving yards in a season with 1,132 as a senior and for a career with 2,643 total yards. … Holds school records for touchdown receptions with 16 in a season and 33 in a career. … Rushed for 1,412 yards and 13 scores and caught 54 passes for 1,132 yards during his senior season. He also recorded 135 yards on kick returns last fall. … Had 40 catches for 651 yards and nine touchdowns and rushed for 296 yards as a junior. … Ran for 1,239 yards and had 27 catches for 680 yards as a sophomore after running for 578 yards as a freshman. … Three-year team captain who earned all-state honors from the Indiana Football Coaches Association in each of his final three years of high school. … Four-year letterwinner in basketball and three-year letterwinner in track as a sprinter and long jumper.
The walk ons
Blair Brooks, 6-2, 180, Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Marion HS)
Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz on the versatility of Samson Evans and Tyrone Tracy, who will begin their Hawkeye careers as wide receivers but could factor into things at running back: “They’re very talented athletes who bring a lot to the table. We’ll start them out at receiver. It’s an area where there are opportunities for young players.’’
Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz on Evans, who quarterbacked Prairie Ridge to back-to-back Illinois 6A state championships: “The day after the Nebraska game a year ago, I was kind of cruising through the kitchen, had the TV on and the Illinois (state championship) games were on. I watching it, wondering who is this guy running through Springfield Griffin? I was captivated. His profile reminded me of Ed Hinkel, a quarterback that had a funny number on. Probably not a quarterback (in college), but a good football player whose team always seems to win.’’
Starters: WR Nick Easley, sr.
Pinstripe Bowl second-team depth: WR Brandon Smith, soph.; WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette, soph.
Max Cooper, 6-0, 175, Waukesha, Wis. (Catholic Memorial HS)
Henry Marchese, 6-3, 190, Vernon Hills, Ill. (Stevenson HS)
Brandon Smith, 6-3, 205, Lake Cormorant, Miss. (Lake Cormorant HS)
Ihmir Smith-Marsette, 6-2, 175, Newark, N.J. (Weequahic HS)