Notebook: Rhoads will evaluate “everything” after season

AMES — Iowa State will enter Saturday’s date with Oklahoma as the 115th ranked offense in college football, averaging just over 332 yards per contest. Add a 1-8 record to that fact and it is pretty clear that something, or multiple things, might change this offseason.

During his weekly press conference on Monday, Paul Rhoads talked about the post-season evaluation process of his program.

“We will be looking at everything,” Rhoads said. “We will be looking at scheme. We will be looking at fundamentals. We will be looking at personnel. We will be looking at opponent defenses in this league. We will be looking at opponent offenses that are having success in this league and why they are having success.”

And what about possible coaching changes from within his staff?

“I don’t necessarily steer towards that,” Rhoads said. “When I say we are going to examine everything, we are going to examine everything. We are going to look at the jobs that coaches have done. We are going to look at the job that my own self has done of motivating this team, leading the staff, giving direction. But that won’t be the focal point of it – do I need to make coaching changes? We will look at everything and move forward from there.” 

Injury report

— Iowa State’s junior defensive tackle David Irving did not play against TCU last weekend for what Rhoads referred to as a “non-football related injury.” Due to confidentiality reasons, Rhoads would not give specifics but did say that he is hopeful Irving could play again this season.

“We are working on answers from medical people and some further testing to get those answers,” Rhoads said. “We are hopeful yes but until we get those responses, I can’t answer that.” 

— Freshman linebacker Luke Knott underwent hip/groin surgery last Friday and arrived back in Ames on Saturday to watch his teammates take on TCU.

“He is riding a stationary bicycle very slowly just to have circulation and movement,” Rhoads said. “It will be a long road of recovery. He will not participate in spring drills and will be hopeful by the summer time that he will be closer to full speed and by August, he will be.”

— As for sophomore quarterback Sam Richardson, Rhoads said that his thumb is a bigger issues than an ongoing ankle injury that has hampered the Florida native since week one. All indications lead to Grant Rohach starting vs. Oklahoma.

— Offensive tackle Jacob Gannon played the majority of Saturday’s game without any issues. 

— Rhoads said that freshman guard Daniel Burton is still questionable for Saturday’s road trip to Norman.

“Daniel was a little bit better on Sunday but certainly not ready to play yet,” Rhoads said. “My gut is that he will, even to the point where he might be back in the starting lineup. That will help quite a bit.”

— Finally, Rhoads noted that senior offensive tackle Kyle Lichtenberg’s career at Iowa State is likely over due to an elbow injury.


*** One of Saturday’s highlights was a beautiful fake punt in the second quarter where Kirby Van Der Kamp connected with Justin Coleman that eventually led to an Iowa State touchdown. But don’t call Rhoads a big gambler…

“People might say that I am a risk taker,” Rhoads said. “Let me tell you – when I take those chances, there is a high percentage that we are going to be successful. I am not a 50-50 guy when it comes to those things. I am pretty sure that we are going to be successful when we take those opportunities. Kirby is a guy that delivers.”

*** Rhoads’ best quote of the day, and maybe the year…

“Sometimes I forget to go to the bathroom because I am consumed with everything else.”

He said that when asked by a reporter about balancing his football life with everything else. Rhoads went into a lengthy explanation of what a home football weekend is like for him:

“Saturday we played a home football game at 11 o’clock. We had five recruits here and we were still grinding with those families at 10 o’clock Saturday night. Vicki and I were up getting the house ready for breakfast at 6:30 on Sunday morning to start with those recruits. Thursday night is sort of still that one window of time left when the preparation is done for the most part. That’s the one day of the week that we go home after practice. We usually end up turning on a Thursday night football game. I am way behind on my Hawaii Five-O and CSI tape recordings right now and I am bitter about that.”

*** Rhoads was asked about what he hopes fans take away from this season. His response…

“I think the fans that follow Iowa State football are highly intelligent fans. I think the fans recognize that we entered the season with a very youthful and inexperienced football team that was quickly decimated by injuries on the offensive line and severely affected at the quarterback position with injuries and thus, we are going to struggle because of it. I think that Iowa State fans recognize that our team has played with outstanding effort and energy in attempt to overcome those things and produce a football team that they continue to be proud of. I think they will take from this season continued hope for 2014 as they see those inexperienced players gaining valuable snaps and the talent that still exists in the program to catapult us forward in 2014.”