Iowa State football added three walk-ons to the fall camp roster: runing back Clifford Kwaw-Mensah, place kicker Chris Francis, and tight end Jake Ortale. Could the kicking walk-on receive immediate playing time?
Cyclones.com has the full press release on the new players, and here’s a breakdown of what the players did in high school last year.
- Kwaw-Mensah from Ames, Iowa, set a record for 2,806 rushing yards in a season and had 36 touchdowns.
- Francis from Dubuque, Iowa, did place kicking, kickoff, and punting duties for the team. He averaged 35.1 yards per punt.
- Ortale from Las Vegas, Nevada, had nearly 700 yards and 12 touchdowns.
The biggest get in the walk-on department could very well be Francis. As of the latest pre-fall camp depth chart, there is no one outside of Holden Kramer or Cole Netten at punter and place kicker, respectively. Francis could be in for emergency purposes or he has the potential to be the kickoff guy if Netten doesn’t hold down the fort for both duties.
Kwaw-Mensah is a nice local catch for the team. Reeling in nearly 3,000 yards in nothing to scoff at no matter what level of football it is. But he’ll have a stable of running backs to break through. Both Aaron Wimberly and DeVondrick Nealy are expected to be the studs at the RB position.
Cyclones.com explains how Paul Rhoads was able get Ortale from Nevada (not the local town in Iowa, the state).
Ortale’s father, Ted, was an all-state performer at Ankeny High School in the 1980s where he was a high school teammate of Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads.
It certainly doesn’t hurt to have another tight end with some catching ability like E.J. Bibbs.