Iowa State entered the offseason in desperate need of immediate help on its offensive line. That’s difficult for any high school prospect to do so clearly the junior college route was the way to go.
Patrick Scoggins, a 6-foot-3, 295-pound interior lineman out of California, is already on campus.
Over the weekend, Paul Rhoads added another important piece to his 2015 recruiting class in the form of a 6-foot-6, 305-pound tackled named Jaypee Philbert.
Philbert, a Coffeyville Community College product, believes that he will be Iowa State’s starting left tackle when Northern Iowa invades Jack Trice Stadium in the 2015 season opener.
“There will be a great chance for me to start at left tackle next year,” Philbert told CycloneFanatic.com. “The offense is really young. They were the youngest team in the Big 12 last year. I think we can be really good next year offensively.”
Philbert, a former Arizona State commit, ultimately chose the Cyclones over Kansas, where he officially visited last weekend. The decision of going with Iowa State over the Jayhawks came down to the coaching staff and what Philbert views as a better chance for immediate success.
“I liked the coaching staff a whole lot better,” Philbert said. “I liked the school and the program a whole lot better. I feel like Iowa State is going to be a better program in these upcoming years.”
The problem for Philbert is the same one that summer JUCO’s usually face. Will he have enough time from when he arrives on campus this June until fall camp to get ready to play in the Big 12?
“I’m sure that the speed of the game is going to be quicker but they have great faith in me and I have great faith in myself,” Philbert said. “I have to go in, work hard, stay humble and stay hungry.”
The good news here is that Philbert’s 6-6, 300-plus pound frame already has him halfway there.
“You can never be strong enough or good enough,” Philbert said. “It’s all about working hard and getting prepared on and off the field and in the weight room.”
Philbert said that he undoubtedly plans to sign with Iowa State on Wednesday.
“They’ve (Iowa State) stuck with me ever since I was committed to Arizona State,” Philbert said. “They were never nervous about my visit to Kansas. I told them I’d stick with them. I’m very excited.”