Recruiting class projections for 2014

Chris Williams

Publisher

Summer is almost here. That means that football camps and potential scholarship offers are just around the corner. Before the recruiting season arrives in full force, I thought it was necessary to take a long hard look at our scholarship chart located HERE and give fanatics a clearer look as to how the 2014 Iowa State football recruiting class might break down from a position-by-position standpoint.

Overview

Every division one football program gets 85 scholarships to hand out on any given year. According to our chart, Iowa State is currently right at 85 for 2013. 

As of now, 16 Cyclones are scheduled to graduate after the 2013 season, giving Iowa State 16 scholarships to give out in 2014. That’s a small class right there. But as is always the case, attrition will occur. Guys transfer and things happen. Let’s open up three spots due to attrition.

If we do that, I’d say that Iowa State will sign anywhere from 16 to 20 prospects in its 2014 class. 

Offense

Quarterback – Iowa State doesn’t lose one after the 2013 season. In fact, even when 2014 comes around, the Cyclones won’t boast a single senior quarterback on the roster. If the right fit comes around at this position, Iowa State signing another signal caller in 2014 wouldn’t surprise me at all.

The real question here is does the staff see Trevor Hodge and Joel Lanning as quarterbacks in the future? Right now, the answer to that question is yes. Will that be the case in October though? Who knows...

If that duo is at quarterabck to stay, then this isn't a priority position on the recruiting trail. Having said that, my money is on Iowa State picking up at least one quarterback in this class regardless. 

Running back – Iowa State is set to lose Shontrelle Johnson, James White and Jeff Woody. That leaves four running backs in the stable for 2014, those men being Aaron Wimberly, DeVondrick Nealy, Rob Standard and Tyler Brown. With seven running backs on the roster for 2013 and three departing, I expect Iowa State to sign at least two running backs in 2014.

Wide receiver – This has obviously been a focal point of the last two classes as Iowa State is set to have five freshmen (counting redshirts and true) on its roster in 2013. Albert Gary is the only senior on the team for next year. Because Paul Rhoads is always looking for additional playmakers, don’t be surprised if Iowa State picks up two or even three wide outs in 2014.

Also keep in mind that the top wide receiver in the 2014 class, Urbandale’s Allen Lazard, has already committed to the Cyclones.

Tight end – Iowa State will lose Ernst Brun to gradation leaving E.J. Bibbs, Pierce Richardson and Alex Leslie in the program for 2014. Considering that none of those three have ever seen the field, I think it is safe to say that the staff will bring in at least one tight end in 2014 for insurance, perhaps another JuCo. 

Offensive line – Kyle Lichtenberg and Ethan Tuftee are scheduled to graduate leaving 15 scholarship offensive linemen (not counting Shaban Dika) in the program for 2014. The staff has stockpiled eight freshmen for the 2013 season along with four juniors (again not counting Dika). It is a nice balance and I assume Rhoads will want to keep it that way. Anywhere from two to three signees makes sense here for Iowa State.

Kicker – Edwin Arceo is on scholarship for the 2013 seaosn and will graduate. With Cole Netten’s four years remaining; don’t expect Iowa State to sign a kicker for quite some time.

Defense

Defensive end – The entire defensive line is somewhat difficult to project at this point. Reason being, we still don’t have much of a clue as to where Iowa Western Community College transfer Rodney Coe is going to play. He’s on our scholarship chart as a defensive end and that’s where he played in JuCo, but I personally am projecting him as a tackle at the next level. There are questions with the young guys too. Collin Bevins for instance is a tackle right now but who is to say that he might not move back to the outside in two years? That is just one example. 

As far as defensive end goes though, Iowa State is in good shape for the foreseeable future in my opinion. Willie Scott is the only Cyclone scheduled to graduate after 2013, leaving three seniors for 2014 and a boast of young talent.

One or two defensive end signees is the projection for the 2014 class. 

Defensive tackle – This is a very similar scenario to defensive end. Walter Woods is the only graduating senior after 2013 leaving one Brandon Jensen as the only upper-classmen in 2014 (remember we have Coe listed as a defensive end so this could change).

According to the chart though, Iowa State will only have five defensive tackles in the program not counting the 2014 recruiting class. I can only assume that two or three interior linemen are in Rhoads’ game plan.

Linebacker – This is a position that I’m especially excited about in the future. Iowa State will lose Jeremiah George after 2013 but after George, Jevohn Miller and Jared Brackens, seven freshmen are set to be on the roster next season, three of them being redshirts. I bet they will take one or two linebackers in 2014 but no more than that as this position looks set for quite some time with a lot of young depth and talent. 

Cornerback – Iowa State already has two verbal commitments here for 2014 and I project that will probably be it for the class unless a real gem comes around. Jansen Watson is the only graduating senior after next season and the program is full of young talent at a critical position in the pass-happy Big 12.

Safety – Assuming that the scholarship chart stays the same and none of the cornerbacks or linebackers move to safety (which is a large assumption), this will be a position of need for Iowa State in its 2014 class. Three safeties (Jacques Washington, Deon Broomfield and Cliff Stokes) are set to move on after next season leaving only Darian Cotton, T.J. Mutcherson and Kamari Syrie in the program for 2014. My assumption is that the staff will move some guys around as they often do at safety. But even so, signing three safeties to this class is my expectation to build depth for the future.

Punter – Reserve one of the scholarships for a punter as Kirby Van Der Kamp is set to graduate. 

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