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Will A Depth Chart Shakeup Increase Competition In Ames?

It’s late in the season, but Iowa State coach Matt Campbell is still trying to get the puzzle pieces to fit in Ames as he shakes up the depth chart in week 11.

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Two weeks ago Iowa State QB Jacob Park got most of the work over starting QB Joel Lanning, and last week against Oklahoma, he replaced Lanning as the starter. Coach Matt Campbell is shaking things up by listing both Park and Lanning as co-starters on this week’s two-deep depth chart. Against the Sooners though, Lanning attempted just one pass. I’m not sure what the “or” is for as it appears coach Campbell has already made the switch.

Quarterback isn’t the only position coach Campbell is shaking up. starting running back Mike Warren and freshmen backs David Montgomery and Kene Nwangwu are also listed as co-starters. For Warren it has been a disappointing season. After averaging nearly six yards a carry last season, he’s averaging just 4.3 this season, and missed the game against the Sooners with a banged up ankle. Considered one of the best backs in the Big 12, he’s now fighting for time with a couple of freshman.

“We’ve got three guys that are doing things that are really positive and great for us,” coach Campbell said during his Monday press conference. “I think you can look at video clips of all of our guys that there are some positive things that they’ve done in eight, nine games.

“You look at the same thing at quarterback, that’s a tough situation because they’ve done some really good things and I don’t know if there are any things where you go, ‘Man, that guy’s so bad you shouldn’t be playing that guy.’

“For me, those are things that you love competition and I’m a guy that I love competition. I wish we had more of it on our team.”

Coach Campbell has preached competition all year, and while this really doesn’t mean much for how the game will be played, maybe it’ll give the younger players a chance as the season wraps up.

“Whoever is starting, whoever is playing more reps, whatever it is at any position, I don’t think that matters anymore,” Lanning told the media this week. “I think everyone just wants to win games and whoever is giving us the opportunity to win games I think is going to play the most.”

Iowa State has played several teams close this year. Close isn’t winning though, and maybe a shake up is what it takes to get the Cyclones over the hump. Their best chance of doing that will come this week as they prepare to face fellow basement dweller, Kansas.

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