I'm a native of Maplewood, Minnesota, a suburb of St. Paul. It was there that I was inflicted with the curse of being a Minnesota Vikings fan. There is still no known cure, though many times I wish there was. I'm also an avid follower of the Minnesota Twins and of course, the Iowa State Cyclones.
Here are some highlights and thoughts from today’s media conference with ISU football coach Paul Rhoads:
Rhoads pointed out that Freshman Daniel Burton and Sophomore Jamison Lalk are listed as starters at offensive guard primarily because Senior Ethan Tuftee has missed some practices due to injury lately. He said all three will play Saturday.
Rhoads said he’s not surprised David Irving has shot up to the top of the depth chart just a couple weeks after moving from defensive end to defensive tackle. He said, in fact, that Irving has “exceeded expectations” at his new position.
Meanwhile, Freshman Charlie Rogers looks to get the start at cornerback Saturday. Rhoads says the Iowa City native has improved his “all-around game” in training camp.
Rhoads hasn’t settled on a placekicker yet, saying the competition between Edwin Arceo and Cole Netten will probably go down to the wire. The guess here is that we’ll see both get a chance Saturday night.
Rhoads says senior James White has earned the start among a crowded field of running backs, but he also held out the possibility that all five tailbacks will see action in some capacity against the Panthers.
The heat is a topic of conversation everywhere, I guess. Rhoads emphasized that both the Cyclones’ first two opponents, Northern Iowa and Iowa will practice in similar conditions, so there’s no advantage there.
Expect a big crowd Saturday so get there early. And be sure to mix in some water along with your other beverages if you’re tailgating. It’s gonna be a hot one.