By Chris Williams, CycloneFanatic.com PublisherFollow Chris on Twitter @ChrisMWilliams
Garland, Tex. native Jared Barnett will make his first start ever as Iowa State’s quarterback on Saturday when the Cyclones travel to Texas Tech.
As you’d imagine, Barnett was to top storyline during today’s media session in Ames.
Get to know the redshirt freshman a little bit better in this transcript from Barnett’s question and answer session with reporters.
Q: I imagine that you’re excited to finally be the starter.
JB: Yeah I am. It’s definitely a goal that I’ve been trying to reach. Now that I’ve reached it, there are a lot more goals that I have to reach, now that I’ve gotten to this point.
Q: What do you think that you need to do to get this offense going?
JB: Plain and simple, I have to get the ball to my playmakers. We have a lot of them on the field. It’s just about finding them and getting it to them on time in space so that they can make plays.
Q: What have you seen from Texas Tech’s defense?
JB: We haven’t watched much of them yet but they are fast and they are big. We’ll watch more film later on in the week and I’ll be able to tell you more. Obviously, they held Oklahoma to few points so they have to be doing something right over there.
Q: Does the fact that your first career start will be in Texas mean anything to you?
JB: It does. I have a lot of family members who are tying to come down. Still, it’s a football game. The outside things really don’t matter. We have to take the Iowa State Cyclones down there and get a victory.
Q: Geography wise, Lubbock is a little ways out there. How far of a drive will that be for your family?
JB: It’s about seven hours from where I’m from. It’s crazy to think that it is still in Texas. They’ll all make it anyway.
Q: Coach said something about you having a car wreck one time before you got here? Take us through that a little bit if you could…
JB: I was going straight and this girl turned right in front of me. It was her second time driving. She was brand new. I was coming up here that weekend for a camp and I was in the hospital for a couple of hours. I had really bad whiplash and stuff like that. Nothing extremely serious. This was back home.
Q: How many people have you called for tickets on Saturday?
JB: I have asked maybe five guys for extra tickets and that’s just starting. There will be a lot more later on in the week.
Q: Were you recruited by Texas Tech at all?
JB: I was recruited by them but not offered by them, no.
Q: Where did you have offers from and what made you commit to Iowa State as early as you did?
JB: I had offers from Kansas State, Houston, here and then Kansas. I really liked the atmosphere here. I visited for the Iowa game my senior year. It wasn’t a very good game but the atmosphere and the offense and I love all of the coaches here. I saw the potential that this team has. That really swayed my decision.
Q: What is Tom Herman like on game day? Is he a calming voice or analytical? What is his personality like?
JB: In front of the team, he’s really a hard and tough guy. But around the quarterbacks he is calm and collected because that’s how he wants us to be. He doesn’t want to get us rattled before the game. He likes to make some jokes but other than that, he is serious and laid back.
Q: So much has been made this year about the turnover problems your team has had. Now that you’re the starter, what can you do to make sure that doesn’t happen?
JB: You have to make the right decision with the ball in your hand. When you get hit, you have to hold onto it. It really is as simple as that. That’s just something that we really have to work on and we have really been putting a lot of emphasis on it in practice.
Q: There were a lot of dropped passes on Saturday. If the receivers start catching those, what will it add to the offense?
JB: It allows big plays to happen. Once the passing game starts opening up, the defense will drop and it will allow our running game to open up. Once we get to clicking in all aspects, this offense will really explode.
Q: How close is it to be clicking?
JB: I see it just looking at the Texas A&M film. It was just one or two plays that we were away from really opening up that game. It’s been like that all season. Just one or two plays here and there and we’ve had these turnovers. We’re really close.