College Football News Preview 2020: Iowa State Cyclones

Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

College Football News Preview 2020: Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State

College Football News Preview 2020: Iowa State Cyclones

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College Football News Preview 2020: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Iowa State Cyclones season with what you need to know.


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– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
Top Players | Key Players, Games, Stats
What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
Schedule Analysis
– Iowa State Previews 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015

2019 Record: 7-6 overall, 5-4 in Big 12
Head Coach: Matt Campbell, 5th year, 26-25
2019 CFN Final Opinion Ranking: 33
2019 CFN Final Season Formula Ranking: 63
2019 CFN Preview Ranking: 29

5. College Football News Preview 2020: Iowa State Cyclones Offense 3 Things To Know

The offense took things to another level with the passing game, and the team scored the most points in school history and more than 400 points for the first time since 2002.

And then things fizzled out, coming up with 17 in the loss to Kansas State and nine in the Camping World Bowl blowout loss to Notre Dame to close things out.

Brock Purdy is back after throwing for 3,982 yards and 27 touchdowns, bombing away for an attack that came up with two touchdown pass or more in nine of the first 11 games and hit the 300-yard mark seven times. He can run, too – he was second on the team with 249 yards and eight scores – but the high-powered offense will keep on bombing away.

Former star recruit Re-al Mitchell transferred to Temple, and the only other backups from last year’s team are walk-ons. Aidan Bouman and Hunter Dekkers were okay recruits who’ll need to be ready to go early on.


CFN in 60 Video: Iowa State Cyclones Preview


Leading receiver Deshaunte Jones is gone, but junior Charlie Kolar might be the Big 12’s best tight end. He’s coming off a 51-catch, seven-touchdown season, and 6-7, 245-pound senior Chase Allen isn’t a bad second option.

Tarique Milton averaged over 20 yards per catch, but the Cyclones need a few volume catchers to step up with Jones and La’Michael Pettway gone. Sophomore Sean Shaw caught five touchdown passes, and Landen Akers is a veteran in the system, but the nice recruits from last year’s class have to rise up, and 6-3, 200-pound JUCO transfer Xavier Hutchinson needs to become an instant factor.

The running game is effective enough to get by, but it has to work. Iowa State was 0-5 last year when it ran for fewer than 100 yards, and is 0-8 over the last two seasons when it can’t get there.

6-1, 205-pound Breece Hall stepped in as a true freshman for David Montgomery and led the way with 897 yards and nine touchdowns, turning it on over the second half of the season. He’ll be the all-purpose back – he made 23 grabs – and the workhorse at times, but junior Johnnie Lang and senior Kene Nwangwu are veterans with starting experience who can be worked into the mix.

The O line, though, needs some work to make it all go. Four starters from the lend of last year are done, with only sophomore Trevor Downing returning to one guard spot. Junior Colin Newell will likely take over at center, and the cupboard isn’t bare to fill in the other spots, but it’s asking a lot to lead the Big 12 again in fewest sacks and tackles for loss allowed.

NEXT: College Football News Preview 2020: Iowa State Cyclones Defense 3 Things To Know

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