September 1, 2012; Ames, IA, USA; Iowa State Cyclones head coach Paul Rhoads leads his team on the field against the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes at Jack Trice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Iowa State football: Paul Rhoads will give Allen Lazard chance to start


It’s not often that you’ll see true freshmen make a start in their first year, but Iowa State’s prized recruit, Allen Lazard, may get that chance.

According to the Des Moines Register, head coach Paul Rhoads said at an annual Character Counts event in Des Moines that he does plan to have Lazard playing in the season opener against North Dakota State.

That’s right: Rhoads said Lazard will play immediately — at least that’s the plan unless something goes haywire between now and the Aug. 30 game at Jack Trice Stadium.

[Rhoads said:] “We’re going to give him every chance to start reaching his potential right away.”

Obviously, Lazard wasn’t on the post-spring practice depth chart, which currently has Quenton Bundrage, Jarvis West, and P.J. Harris as the starters. Nothing against Harris, but the sophomore will likely have the toughest time holding his starting job with both West and Bundrage as returning starters.

The offense can only get better after last season. The Cyclones were already in trouble when they didn’t have health or experience under center, and a consistent go-to receiver was never found.

Now there will be some weapons on the offensive end with Bundrage and West’s experience. Lazard looks to be a star in waiting. Don’t forget E.J. Bibbs at the tight end position, which some are claiming is the best athlete on the team heading into next season.

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