Jared Clauss played defensive tackle for the Hawkeyes from 1999 to 2003. Clauss, a Des Moines native, was a part of Kirk Ferentz’s first recruiting class at Iowa. After redshirting during his freshman year, Clauss saw regular playing time on the defensive line over the next four seasons. Jared started in two games as a sophomore and in all 13 games as a junior for an Iowa team that finished with a perfect 8-0 conference record and Co-Champions of the Big Ten. He also started 11 games for the Hawkeyes as a senior in 2003 finishing his career with a 37-17 blowout win against the Florida Gators in the 2004 Outback Bowl. Clauss was named honorable mention All-Big Ten as a junior and senior and also was an Academic All-Big Ten performer in all four seasons as a Hawkeye.
Jared Clauss was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in the 7th round of the 2004 NFL Draft. He played in 14 games with one start during his rookie season of 2004 and 15 games in 2005. Clauss was released after two seasons with Tennessee and would not play another down in the NFL. He finished his career with 25 tackles (18 solo) in 29 games played.
Jared has since returned to West Des Moines, Iowa and works for UBS as a Financial Consultant.
Hawkeye Sports News recently caught up with former Hawkeye Jared Clauss to ask him about his experiences at Iowa and also to get his opinion on the upcoming season. Here is a copy of the complete transcript from our interview with Jared Clauss:
Hawkeye Sports News: What is the favorite memory you have from your playing days with Iowa?
Jared Clauss: The number one memory I have is singing the fight song in the locker room after we beat Minnesota up there and won the Big Ten title. It was so much more special because we came from 4 wins in our first two years and made a lot of improvement. We had a good team that year and we were firing on all cylinders. Carrying coach Ferentz off the field, having my family there as well as so many Iowa fans, and the locker room afterwards...it was a special day in so many ways. I love telling non Iowa fans that our fans tore down their goalposts and tried to carry them out of the stadium...classic!
HSN: Did you play football professionally after college and for how long?
JC: Yes I did play football for a few years after I left. I was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in 2004. I made their team for two years then in the third year I was injured and released. I was then picked up by the Washington Redskins and went to camp with them. After they cut me I signed with the Oakland Raiders during the 2007 season. Football was a great blessing. I played with so many great teammates and for a ton of great coaches. Tennessee was especially unique and fun. I was one of 5 defensive linemen they drafted that same year, and we became very close. It is unusual to have such a big focus in one draft class on one position. It was a great experience. Running out of the tunnel, getting to start a few games, playing against some of the best of all time in some historic venues, being a captain, getting to live out a dream. It was everything I thought it would be and more.
HSN: How did your experiences at Iowa help prepare you for life after football?
JC: Iowa prepared me for so many things. Football taught me discipline, work ethic, time management, focus, drive, and teamwork. It is not hard for me to get things done and stay on task in what I do because that is all I know. Iowa was a great place because the coaching staff practiced what they preached. It was easy to buy into what we were trying to get done because they acted in the same ways that they wanted us to. I feel confident going forward in my new career because I know that the University of Iowa and the football program helped develop in me many attributes that will carry me forward. It's not rhetoric either, I truly am thankful for the many folks who helped me along the way. I also appreciate the many friendships that came out of my time at Iowa. I consider those people some of my closest and most respected friends. I'm really glad I chose the University of Iowa. I'll always be a Hawk.
HSN: Where are you currently residing and what is your current occupation?
JC: After football I moved back home to West Des Moines. I like it here because it has a sense of community and it isn't too big. It's home yes, but it is a great place with great people, just like anywhere in Iowa. You can't put a price tag on great neighbors and lifelong friends. I waited out the season last year and after I didn't hear much in terms of football I decided to enter the financial services industry. I am currently a financial advisor for the world's largest wealth management firm UBS. I'm very excited about the opportunity I have, and can't wait for what lies ahead.
HSN: How closely do you still follow the Hawkeyes and what are your feelings of the team's future and upcoming season?
JC: I still follow the Hawkeyes very closely. I try to get to as many games as I can during the season. This past year was really the first year I've had the ability to get back to games. It is a unique experience to have seen Kinnick from the field and the stands. It took me a while to adjust to the fan life. I still want to come out in the swarm, but those days are long gone. There's no place like Kinnick to watch a game. It was tough being away from there when I was in the NFL, but I tried to catch them on TV as much as I could. The Big Ten guys on the Titans got a lot of rivalry and competition going when our teams were playing each other on Saturdays. It was fun, I think I had a Buckeye wearing a Hawkeye shirt one year after we thumped them. That was tough for him to do, but a deal is a deal. I am optimistic for the upcoming season. I know Coach Ferentz and the staff will have them ready to play. I wouldn't want anyone else leading that ship than who is behind the wheel now. It's great to be a Hawk. I can't wait for opening kickoff!