Iowa State football: Is this the best offense in Paul Rhoads era?


Could this possibly be Iowa State’s best offensive unit in recent years? One source that covers the Cyclone football team thinks so.

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Here’s the video from the Des Moines Register that features Chad Leistikow and Tommy Birch discussing how this could be the best offense in the Paul Rhoads era. They break down Mark Mangino’s impact, the starting quarterback, and all the other skill positions.

In summary, the duo believes the offensive line is certainly in top condition, they believe at the quarterback position that Sam Richardson is the outside man looking in toward Grant Rohach and Joel Lanning, they expect a ton of touches from running backs Aaron Wimberly and DeVondrick Nealy, and Allen Lazard should appear on the field in the season opener.

Mangino certainly should provide a lot of optimism in the future of the Cyclone offense. Despite a lot of promise on paper, I can’t help but looking back at last year and remembering saying the same thing.

I still expect the team to finish toward the bottom of the Big 12 offensively.

Sam Richardson had the same momentum at the end of 2012 that Rohach did in 2013. There was a solid group of running backs — all seniors — that were expected to make a deep impact last year and ended up being a disaster. And that offensive line has never lived up to expectations, and I’d say there’s a lot more questions in that unit after the MASH unit they were a season ago.

Considering the team is learning a new offense under Mangino and is facing a brutal front-loaded schedule, I still expect the team to finish toward the bottom of the Big 12 offensively. There’s a chance they can finish above Kansas and West Virginia, but I think that’s about it.

Until Iowa State actually does it on the field, I wouldn’t be comfortable sitting here setting expectations that this offense can finish near the middle of the Big 12 when it never does.