Nov 26, 2016; Ames, IA, USA; Iowa State Cyclones quarterback Jacob Park (10) throws a pass as West Virginia Mountaineers defensive lineman Adam Shuler (88) chases from behind during the second quarter at Jack Trice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Nobody knew what to expect from Jacob Park in his first season with Iowa State. The 6-foot-4 signal caller had not yet played in a collegiate football game and had not played football at all since 2014.

Park, a native of Charleston, S.C., exceeded all expectations fans and people across the country had for him. He started the Cyclones’ last five games while throwing for 1,791 yards, 12 touchdowns and completing 58.8 percent of his passes.

Park’s 138.52 quarterback rating ranks as the third best number for a single-season in program history. Interestingly, he sits right ahead of the man he replaced, Joel Lanning, who put together a 136.72 rating.

Now, the expectations for Park are as high as they’ve been for any Iowa State quarterback in recent memory. He was named to the Maxwell Award Watch List and is frequently pointed at by media members across the country as a player primed for a breakout season in 2017.

With the number of weapons Park will have at his disposal on Iowa State’s offense this season, there are few reasons to think he won’t match or exceed those expectations again.

Jared Stansbury


Jared a native of Clarinda, Iowa, started as the Cyclone Fanatic intern in August 2013, primarily working as a videographer until starting on the women’s basketball beat prior to the 2014-15 season. Upon earning his Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Iowa State in May 2016, Jared was hired as the site’s full-time staff writer, taking over as the primary day-to-day reporter on football and men’s basketball. He was elevated to the position of managing editor in January 2020. He is a regular contributor on 1460 KXNO in Des Moines and makes regular guest appearances on radio stations across the Midwest. Jared resides in Ankeny with his four-year-old puggle, Lolo.

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