Jan 2, 2021; Glendale, AZ, USA; Iowa State Cyclones defensive back Anthony Johnson Jr. (26) celebrates against the Oregon Ducks in the Fiesta Bowl at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Iowa State has officially named its captains for the 2022 football season.
Senior defensive back Anthony Johnson, senior center Trevor Downing, senior wide receiver Xavier Hutchinson and senior linebacker O’Rien Vance have been voted as the team’s leaders ahead of next Saturday’s season opener against Southeast Missouri State.
Johnson has been praised for his leadership by the Iowa State staff throughout the offseason. The St. Petersburg, Fla. native appeared in 50 games as a Cyclone over the last four years while playing cornerback and will move to safety for his senior season.
He’s tallied 183 tackles, 13 tackles for loss, three sacks, 24 passes defended and forced two fumbles so far in his career.
Downing enters the season as one of the most decorated offensive linemen in program history. The first-team All-Big 12 in 2021 has started 26 games in his Iowa State career with most of them coming at guard.
He’s listed among the players to watch for the Rimington Trophy and Lombardi Award.
Hutchinson posted one of the best seasons by a wide receiver in Iowa State history last year, tallying a single-season school record 83 receptions for 987 yards and five touchdowns. The two-time first-team All-Big 12 selection enters his senior season eighth in program history with 147 career receptions and 10th with 1,758 career receiving yards.
Vance has been one of the steadying forces of Iowa State’s defense over the last several years while tallying 194 tackles, 22 tackles for loss and 10 sacks. The 2020 Fiesta Bowl Defensive MVP has appeared in 45 games for Iowa State over the last four years.
Iowa State will open its season next Saturday, Sept. 3, against Southeast Missouri State at 1 p.m. inside Jack Trice Stadium.