Three Matchups to Watch Against the Hawkeyes


Marvin McNutt vs Leonard Johnson

This one is a dandy.  Both Marvin McNutt and Leonard Johnson are two NFL Draft Prospects. projects Johnson to be drafted in the third round and McNutt to be selected in the 5th or 6th.  McNutt is a big, physical receiver who uses his body well to make space between him and the cornerback.  McNutt has a four inch advantage on Johnson but that doesn’t worry LJ.  Johnson says that he will have to be confident and trust his techniques in order to limit McNutt.  Vandenberg is a new quarterback and will look to McNutt to make big plays and change the momentum.  Shutting down McNutt should be one of the top priorities for the Cyclones if they want to win.

Steele Jantz vs the Hawkeye Secondary

It is the big question; which Steele Jantz will show up?  The one who struggled for the first three quarters against a FCS team or the one who lead Iowa State to a comeback win in the fourth quarter?  He will need to    repeat his fourth quarter play in order for the offense to have success.  It will be tough, Iowa has a lot of talent in their secondary which is headed by an all-Big Ten corner in Shaun Prater.  Along with Prater, the Hawkeyes have Micah Hyde who was honorable mention all-Big Ten last year.  In this past offseason, Hyde switched from corner to free safety.

Iowa State’s Special Teams vs Iowa’s Special Teams

Anything can happen in a rivalry game.  The Iowa-Iowa State games are usually close games (I know they haven’t been the last two years) that end up being decided by special teams.  In the 2007 game, all points ISU points were scored on field goals by Bret Culbertson.  The next year, the game was won on an Andy Brodell punt return for a touchdown.  Iowa State’s best special team asset is definitely Kirby Van Der Kamp who kept putting UNI in bad field position last week.  Iowa State may need to depend on new kicker Zach Guyer who hasn’t attempted a field goal yet.  Iowa’s kicker, Michael Meyer was good for 14 of his 17 field goal attempts last year.