The state of Indiana has several national top-500 talents in the class of 2022, and the IU football program has been working diligently to build relationships early.
After a strong 2019 season that saw the Hoosiers finish 8-5, the message that Indiana is a place for state’s best to not only play but thrive is resonating.
Indianapolis (Ind.) defensive end Joe Strickland is one of the top ranked players at his position in the country. 247Sports currently has him slotted at the No. 14 defensive end, and the No. 163 player overall. Strickland has made several visits to Indiana, and he is impressed with the direction of the program.
“I’m liking how the program is going at the moment,” Strickland told The Daily Hoosier. “I love what Coach Allen is doing with the program and I’m pretty sure that’s noticeable from people all around the country.”
Strickland has been on campus in Bloomington on multiple occasions including for summer camp in 2019 where the Hoosiers offered, the night win over Northwestern in November, and the program’s “junior day” in January.
Already at 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds, Strickland had a strong sophomore season. He recorded 24 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss and five sacks against offenses intent on running away from and double teaming him.
Because Strickland’s relationship with Indiana spans more than a year, he has seen some turnover with the coaching staff including a change from Mark Hagen to Kevin Peoples as the defensive line coach.
Strickland also took note of IU’s hiring of new strength coach Aaron Wellman from the New York Giants.
“The new addition with the strength coach is just going to make the weight room atmosphere better then it was before,” Strickland said. “He knows his stuff and he’s been doing it for a long time. I am looking forward to seeing what he will do this season.”
Indiana was in early with Strickland and the Hoosiers are in a good position right now. But there is still a long way to go in Strickland’s recruitment, and of course a player of his abilities is garnering significant interest.
Indiana was the first power five program to offer Strickland a scholarship last June, and several others have followed since including Purdue, Michigan, Cincinnati, and Boston College.
The highly regarded 4-star recruit has a wide range of additional interest including Notre Dame, Ohio State and Iowa.
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