June 2, 2011
MIH: #6 Shaun Prater
Shaun Prater almost didn't make our list of most indispensable Hawkeyes. That's because he nearly jumped to the NFL after last season. Thankfully, the Omaha native will be returning for his senior season to try and improve his draft stock and hopefully win football games with his Hawkeye teammates.
MEASUREMENTS: 5-foot-11 and 180 pounds
THE NUMBERS: 68 tackles, four interceptions and six pass breakup's.
WHY PRATER MADE THE LIST:
After flirting with the NFL, Shaun Prater admits he didn't get the type of feedback to make him a sure fire high draft pick in the NFL Draft. While he didn't get too specific, basically he wasn't a top three round prospect at this time.
That doesn't mean he isn't a pretty good pro prospect and he could certainly increase his value this season with the Hawkeyes. Prater has gotten better every year in terms of coverage skills and tackling, so his arrow continues to move upward. He's a high energy player on the field and his leadership in the secondary will be critical this season with so many new faces potentially in play.
Iowa's defensive secondary isn't very deep heading into the 2011 season, so that is a big reason that Prater makes the list of most indispensable Hawkeyes this season. But, he is one heck of a player, earning All Big Ten honors last season. The college football preseason magazines have hit the newsstands and they expect him to be on the 1st team again this fall and a few publications have listed him as a 2nd team All American cornerback. Iowa's defense will be relatively young and Prater will be counted on to be on the veteran anchors against the pass as the defensive line develops.
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