Matt Campbell discusses why Mike Rose could be a factor at middle linebacker this season.
Matthew Bain, Sports writer
AMES, Ia. — Let’s be thankful the Iowa State students (including at least one freshman football player) nabbed by campus police last week didn’t get hurt.
Let’s be thankful the late-night campus-wide alert ended with an all-clear and all-OK.
Let’s be thankful it didn’t result in something worse, because just think …
“If you pulled that (BB gun) on an officer, it’s probably going to end very badly.”
That’s what Iowa State Police Chief Michael Newton told me. Cyclones defensive back Dallas Taylor-Cortez was one of two students charged this week as part of an ongoing investigation after campus police received reports of armed individuals near a university apartment complex last Thursday night. Police ended up recovering multiple BB guns.
Thank goodness the frightening hypothetical that Newton described never happened and the whole situation last week ended safely. It created scary scenarios — for the police, for a concerned campus and for the people allegedly walking around with BB guns.
Here’s what else Newton said in regards to a question we received on the Register’s weekly Iowa State Facebook live session Wednesday:
“It’s concerning behavior in this day and age,” he said. “People need to think about the world we’re living in. Running around with a realistic-looking gun is not a good idea.”
Taylor-Cortez was one of four football players suspended last week for what coach Matt Campbell called: “Multiple incidents of poor choices and behavior.” If he’s guilty of what’s alleged, I’d say Campbell’s description is spot on.
The other three suspended were Joseph Scates, Tayvonn Kyle and Jaeveyon Morton. All four were/are expected to play at some point during this season. All four were/are likely to take advantage of a new NCAA rule that allows true freshmen to play up to four games without losing a season of eligibility.
All we know now is that they for sure won’t play in Saturday’s 7 p.m. opener against FCS No. 3 South Dakota State at Jack Trice Stadium.
Whomever was involved in last week’s incident — there’s better ways to have fun.
“None of the information we received indicated (guns were loaded),” Newton said. “They just weren’t thinking. They were trying to have some fun, unfortunately this isn’t the kind of fun to have in this day and age.”
Here are other topics we discussed on our weekly Facebook live session:
Topic: David Montgomery
My guess is that the junior running back rushes around 20 times for 150 or so yards on Saturday against South Dakota State. He’s bigger, stronger and faster than he was while aggressively rushing and eluding tacklers en route to 1,146 yards last season, and remember this:
Campbell, the head coach/offensive coordinator will show only as much offense as it takes to start 1-0. The Hawkeyes are next, in Iowa City. After that, it’s back home against Oklahoma.
Thus, Saturday’s game will be as vanilla as it takes to win. Campbell doesn’t want to put much on film with rival Iowa up next.
Topic: Blowout the FCS opponent?
This isn’t Cupcake U. coming to The Jack. This is FCS’ third-ranked team, a team that has beaten powerful North Dakota State, and a team that reached the semifinal round of the national playoffs in 2017. Two from last season’s team were drafted, so there’s that, too.
The Cyclones are favored by between 10 points and two touchdowns, which seems about right. It’ll likely be a competitive game throughout. Don’t read much into the final score — unless Iowa State loses.
Topic: The starting middle linebacker
Absolutely it could be true freshman Mike Rose. The coaches wouldn’t be saying so many good things about him if he didn’t have a chance.
“He’s the real deal,” cornerback D’Andre Payne said this week. “Just watch. He’s a good player. He’s been impressive during camp.”
Linebackers coach Tyson Veidt worked wonders in transitioning quarterback Joel Lanning into one of the top Big 12 Conference linebackers for his final season. Rose has been playing linebacker all his life. Furthermore, he’s got veterans Marcel Spears and Willie Harvey on either side.
So who starts, Rose or redshirt freshman O’Rien Vance? Doesn’t really matter, because both will play.
Topic: Place-kicking competition
This could be an on-going situation among Brayden Narveson, Connor Assalley and Chris Francis. Whoever has the best week of practice gets the job in games until someone eventually becomes No. 1.
What’s known is that Francis will kick off. And given that Campbell says he likes separate players doing kickoffs and extra points/field goals — the guess is that Narveson, a three-star recruit from Arizona, gets first crack at replacing Garrett Owens.
Topic: Football-playing apparel
Predictably, someone wondered what color combination Iowa State will wear Saturday night. Predictably, I don’t really care, but since you asked …
The special black-on-black uniforms will come out for the Oklahoma game — maybe. All-white will be worn in Iowa City — probably, and how about this combo for Saturday: Red-over-black.
Or something like that.
Iowa State columnist Randy Peterson has been with the Register for parts of five decades. Randy writes opinion and analysis of Iowa State football and basketball. You can reach Randy at email@example.com or on Twitter at @RandyPete.
Source: Des Moines Register