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Waverly-Shell Rock's (Iowa) Asa Newsom remains hot prospect on recruiting trail

The senior athlete has offers from Iowa, Minnesota, Stanford, Kansas State, Nebraska and Missouri
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By Dana Becker | Courtesy photos 

For many, making a college decision has come and gone. For Waverly-Shell Rock standout Asa Newsom, that remains something he has yet to do. 

But Newsom is not sweating it. Instead, his focus remains on helping lead the Go-Hawks to a Class 4A state football championship. 

“Just the blessing to do what I love gets me excited to play,” Newsom said. “I am truly grateful for my health and the ability to do what I love.”

Waverly-Shell Rock improved to 8-0 and is ranked inside the Top 10 of the SBLive Iowa Power 25 Rakings following a convincing 52-10 victory over Mason City. As the regular season winds down, the Go-Hawks remain a team to beat in 4A.

And a good chunk of that belongs to Newsom.

Asa Newsom Minnesota

A senior from an athletic family, Newsom is a touchdown waiting to happen on offense. He has scored 10 touchdowns overall this fall, including seven on the ground and two more in the air.

Newsom, who plays running back and linebacker, does not need many touches, either, to make a difference. He is averaging 18.5 - yes, 18.5 - yards per carry and 18.8 yards per reception. That includes a long run of 68 yards and a long reception of 51.

[SBLive recruiting: news, analysis and more coverage of the nation's top prospects]

His totals sit at 23 rushes for 426 yards and 19 receptions for 358 following a night where he racked up 117 yards on just five touches, including a pair of touchdowns.

But it has not always gone so smoothly for Newsom and the Go-Hawks. An injury hindered his freshman season, and as a sophomore, Waverly-Shell Rock went 4-4 with Newsom running for 670 yards and hauling in another 138 on seven receptions.

A torn ACL put Newsom on the sidelines and forced him to improve himself in other ways.

“After tearing my ACL my freshman year, I went plant-based for a little over a year and really focused on the details of my training,” he said. “Our high school trainer (Destry Sperfslage) has been awesome with my past knee rehab and strength training. He has been a huge part of my growth.”

His ability to also play defense and be an integral part of the special teams over the past three years makes him the hot commodity that he has become on the recruiting trail. He is regarded as an athlete and a three-star prospect with offers from Iowa, Minnesota, Stanford, Kansas State, Nebraska, Missouri and interest from several other schools.

Newsom has taken official visits to Iowa, Minnesota, Stanford and Kansas, while is brother, Mosai Newsom, is a sophomore defensive lineman at Nebraska.

“My older brother (Mosai) has been a huge influence on me from the beginning,” he said. “We always dreamed about playing at the next level. Being able to watch him now play at Nebraska is a blessing.

“He’s been a huge help in my recruiting process.”

Asa Newsom Stanford

A graduate in three years, Mosai Newsom is currently a sophomore for the Cornhusers. He earned his Bachlor’s degree in August and was selected academic All-Big Ten in 2020.

The elder Newsom also earned Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll accolades four times and was named all-state at Waverly-Shell Rock while helping them reach the state playoffs multiple times.

Marcus Newsom, the father of both Mosai and Asa, along with Che’ Newsom, is the current Director of Cross Country and Track and Field, along with being an assistant athletic director, at Wartburg College. He played football at junior college powerhouse Butler (Kan.) Community College and also ran track before transferring to Bethany (Kan.) College.

Last year, Newsom racked up 690 yards rushing and six touchdowns to go along with nine receptions for 63 with a score. He also made 54 tackles and posted almost 30 yards per kickoff return as Waverly-Shell Rock went 10-2 and reached the state semifinals.

That taste of being oh-so-close to greatness has helped fuel the team this year. He also battled a minor knee injury suffered in the state quarterfinals that left him playing only one-way in the final four.

“It would mean everything (to win a state championship),” Newsom said. “These guys and coaches have worked extremely hard for this and it has been an overlying focus for a long time for a lot of people.

“But the season is a long season. We still have to focus on getting better day by day. Taking it step by step is a major focus for us.”

Newsom is also a multi-sport standout for the Go-Hawks, competing in several events in track during the spring where he had team bests in the 200-meter dash, 400-meter dash and 400-meter hurdles.

Waverly-Shell Rock will compete for the final time at home this regular season on Friday night when they meet SBLive Iowa Top-20 Western Dubuque. The Go-Hawks conclude the year at Decorah the following Friday night.