Offensive breakdown by position

After Saturday's Iowa State spring game, some starting spots appear to be locked down with others still up for grabs going into fall camp.

Here is a rundown of the offensive unit:

Quarterback: Coach Paul Rhoads said there would be a four-way battle for the starting job and has done nothing to deviate from that. In each of the spring scrimmages, Jerome Tiller, Steele Jantz, Jared Barnett and James Capello all received repetitions with the number one offense. All four players possess significant athletic prowess and had their moments throwing the ball during the spring. Tiller, who has started four games at Iowa State, and Jantz, a junior college transfer, appear to be the frontrunners after the spring game.

Running Back: The Cyclones' "Smash and Dash" combination, Jeff Woody and Shontrelle Johnson, played significant minutes last season and look to get the lion's share of the carries this season. Woody possesses the ability to get short yardage first downs and touchdowns on the goal line, while Johnson has the ability to go 50+ yards any time he touches the ball. James White appears to poised to figure into the equation and Rhoads is a coach that likes to use multiple backs as well.

Wide Receivers/Tight End: Darius Reynolds has struggled with the injury problems in his time at Iowa State but looks to have shaken those and is ready for a breakout senior season. Reynolds had over 100 yards receiving in the spring game and showed his big play ability, when two of his catches went for over 40 yards. Jantz's junior college teammate Aaron Horne showed his elusive ability with two total touchdowns in the game and could get some time regardless of the quarterback position. Iowa State also returns Darius Darks and Josh Lenz at the position, while youngsters like Albert Gray are fighting for time. Kurt Hammerschmidt returns at tight end and its looks like he and Ricky Howard will fight it out to replace Collin Franklin.

Offensive Line: This unit returns three starters, including both tackles. Left tackle Kelechi Osemele was named 2nd team all-Big 12 in 2009 and has started every game the past two seasons. Brayden Burris started all but one game at right tackle last season and right guard Hayworth Hicks also played in every game last season. Redshirt sophomore Ethan Tuftee and redshirt freshman Shaban Dika are battling it out at the other guard spot and redshirt freshman Tom Farniok and junior college transfer Sam Tautolo are doing the same at the center spot.


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