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Name: Zach VanValkenburg (Transfer from Hillsdale)
College: Iowa     Number: 97
Height: 6-3   Weight: 267
Position: DE  Pos2: DT
Class/Draft Year: rSr/2022

40 Low: 4.85
   40 Time: 4.93
  40 High: 5.04
Projected Round:   Stock:    

Combine Invite: 
Height: 6026
Weight: 267

Zybek PD3X AKA "Official"
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225 Lb. Bench Reps: 
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Height: 6026
Weight: 267
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 Data Scout Notes: 2021: PLott...2020: 2ndC...Transferred to Iowa in summer in '19. Announced transfer from Hillsdale to Iowa on Feb 23 '19. G-MAC DL of YR, 1st team All-G-MAC w/70 TT, 14.5 TFL, 8.5 SCK, 4 QBH, 3 FF in 13 gms in '18. 1st team All-G-MAC w/32 TT, 4.5 TFL, 4.5 SCK, 2 QBH, FF in 11 gms in '17. Redshirted in '16.

 Zach VanValkenburg, Iowa, Player News

  08/07/21 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  VanValkenburg's three years of experience before coming to Iowa, he said, played a role in his quick transition. This spring, Ferentz felt VanValkenburg looked more confident than ever on the field. "Some call (VanValkenburg) a marquee guy, but he wasn't two years ago, not a big story, but he turned out to be a really good fit," Ferentz said. Now a leader of a young defensive line group, VanValkenburg said the difference between Day 1 and Day 15 of spring practice was staggering for him and his teammates, which was needed for a unit that lost three key veterans last season. Redshirt freshmen tackle Yahya Black and right end Deontae Craig made their way on the pre-fall depth chart. "Yahya surprises me every day, I just walked by him like this guy is as big as offensive tackles, and he's super athletic and really smart," VanValkenburg said. "I think the strength is, everyone is selfless, ready to play their role. It's not an NFL locker room where you're just grabbing people and throwing them together - we're a tight-knit group. We've been together for a while, even the freshmen have been here a couple years."

That selflessness transfers into his off-the-field branding. Recently, VanValkenburg joined teammates Jack Koerner and Tommy Kujawa to launch an apparel line called "The Walk-On Mentality," where 50 percent of the money made off the apparel or company partnerships will benefit a scholarship fund for walk-on athletes across the country. While not a walk-on himself, VanValkenburg believes the message can resonate with Division II transfers like him. "Technically, I'm not a walk-on, I'm a Division II transfer, but I do understand the power of that mentality," VanValkenburg said in an interview with KGGO radio station on Monday. "My two roommates are walk-ons, so I've seen the work they've had to go through to be successful. You don't get the same preferred privileges or scholarships, but you still do all the work, obviously school as well." - The Gazette


(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: The Gazette
Share/Comment/External News Feed: Here


  07/27/21 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  Two years ago, Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz made a rare dip into the transfer portal. Where the portal is mainly known for harboring high-level recruits and established names on the college landscape, Ferentz recruited a little-known defensive end from Division II Hillsdale College in Michigan. "Somebody may get a marquee guy," Ferentz said. "We got Zach VanValkenburg, who I think is a marquee guy but he wasn't two years ago. It wasn't a big story." Today, VanValkenburg is an All-Big Ten selection and one of three players representing Iowa at Big Ten Media Days in Indianapolis. He is a "super senior" who utilized his extra year of eligibility granted due to COVID-19. Despite last year's production - 30 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss and a nation-leading four fumble recoveries - this will be VanValkenburg's first opportunity to be at the forefront of Iowa's defensive line. A lot of that has to do with his teammates in Iowa City.

Along the defensive line, Iowa has had three products drafted to the NFL over the past two years, including 2020 first-round pick A.J. Epenesa. VanValkenburg was a dominant player at the Division II level, but there were Power 5 growing pains during his reserve season in 2019, as well as when he was a starter in 2020. "Learning a new defense and playing behind really good guys," VanValkenburg said. "You get your time in there and you're just trying not to mess up and that's a hard way to play. Getting the opportunity to start, get a lot of reps, you get more comfortable, game speed slows down and you can focus on making plays and not just holding your own." - Iowa City Press-Citizen


(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: Iowa City Press-Citizen
Share/Comment/External News Feed: Here


  06/11/21 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  Iowa returns second-team All-Big Ten senior defensive lineman Zach VanValkenburg on the edge. VanValkenburg tied for first nationally with four fumble recoveries last season and tallied 30 tackles, including 14 solo, 8.5 for loss and 3.5 sacks. During the spring, Iowa defensive line coach Kelvin Bell said the older guys up front, including VanValkenburg and juniors Noah Shannon and John Waggoner are the current leaders of the group. Junior Joe Evans, a former walk-on, was also put on scholarship in 2020 for his performance. Having spring football back was something noted as an advantage going into this season as opposed to last. It took Iowa a few games to build consistency on the line last year.

"By the time you start in fall camp, it had been a whole year since we played and we were rusty," VanValkenburg said following the final spring practice on May 1. "No matter how many drills you do on your own, nothing can simulate full contact like football. You get a lot better cohesion when you're able to practice together." This offseason, VanValkenburg said he's been working on better flipping his hips to the outside in his blocking to garner more power and control in fending off blockers on the edge. He hopes he can become more consistent on either side. - The Gazette


(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: The Gazette
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  01/02/21 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  Zach VanValkenburg enjoyed a big fifth-year senior season for the Hawkeyes, and now will return for a sixth. The Iowa football program's 2021 hopes got a nice and somewhat unexpected boost Wednesday when it learned an all-Big Ten Conference defensive end will be returning for a sixth season. Zach VanValkenburg, who had four fumble recoveries in eight games, announced on social media that he would take advantage of the free year of eligibility extended by the NCAA during the global COVID-19 pandemic. - Iowa City Press-Citizen

(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: Iowa City Press-Citizen
Share/Comment/External News Feed: Here


  12/16/20 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  2020 ALL-BIG TEN FOOTBALL SECOND TEAM (COACHES): DL Zach VanValkenburg, Iowa,...VanValkenburg, who was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week following his three-sack performance in Iowa's win over Minnesota, earns his first career postseason nod. A Zeeland, Michigan, native, VanValkenburg's 3.5 sacks is third on the team and his 8.5 TFLs are tied for sixth-best in the Big Ten. VanValkenburg shares the national lead with four fumble recoveries. - Iowa Football

(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: Iowa Football
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  11/16/20 - DE Zach VanValkenburgrSr/2022, Iowa, 6-3, 267 (DS#32 DE) + More +

  NOV 16 BIG TEN DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Zach VanValkenburg, Iowa, Sr., DE, Zeeland, Mich./Hillsdale College,...Recorded a career-high three sacks at Minnesota, the most by a Hawkeye since A.J. Epenesa in 2019...Tallied five tackles in the contest, including four solo stops...Anchored a defense that held the Gophers to seven points, nearly 30 points fewer than their average...Claims his first career Defensive Player of the Week honor...Last Iowa Defensive Player of the Week: A.J. Epenesa (Dec. 2, 2019). - Big Ten Football

(DS#32 DE) rSr/2022 DE Zach VanValkenburgIowa
News Source: Big Ten Football
Share/Comment/External News Feed: Here





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