Decision Time For ISU Coaches

Although Iowa State's team is filled with veterans on both sides of the ball, a few position battles among some inexperienced players has highlighted preseason training camp. An important session of that camp will conclude with this afternoon's scrimmage, in which the Cyclone coaching staff hopes to make some key decisions on a number of issues.

ISU competes in a scrimmage of 80 to 85 plays this afternoon, and in the days that follow a starting quarterback could be named. Preseason practices, unlike spring workouts, are closed to the media.

"We haven't finalized any starting lineups right now until we get through (this afternoon's) scrimmage," said head coach Dan McCarney. "This is the last real important evaluation. We've got to finalize some decisions on who our starterrs are, who we're going to hold, redshirt and play of the new guys. In the next couple of days we'll be able to finalize things (at quarterback). Today is really important.

"We're going to start zeroing in on Northern Iowa after today. Friday night is a mock game, but it's all against Northern Iowa. It's assignments and efforts, but it's basically ones and twos against threes and fours. It's getting ready for Northern Iowa."

But the battle that's on at quarterback with Austin Flynn and Waye Terry isn't the only one. Mac wants to name a starting cornerback (Harold Clewis vs. Anthony Forrest), first-team tight end (Brett Kellogg, James Wright and Kenny Segin are all three in the mix) and field goal man (Tony Yelk vs. Adam Benike) in the next few days.

Injuries have sidelined a few players at times this August, but the only serious injury to speak of is the broken leg suffered by reserve defensive back Henry Poullard.

McCarney indicated on Monday that Stevie Hicks missed a few practices with an undisclosed injury and added today that fullback Ryan Kock and linebacker Joe Woodley have also sat out at different times.

"(Hicks) is getting close, but he's not 100 percent right now," McCarney said. "He's back practicing. Kock and Woodley are back practicing. Those guys all missed for some minor things and they're all back now."

True freshman Jason Berryman continued to get some rave reviews Wednesday. McCarney indicated the young defensive end had moved ahead of redshirt freshman Korey Smith and would likely be the top reserve rush end for the season opener.

"(Jason Berryman) is clearly the backup number two right now," McCarney said. "He's got to go out and scrimmage well today, but he's been one of the most impressive kids in our camp. We've already made a decision on him. There's no question he will play.

"If he continues the way he is right now, he will get substantial playing time this year as a true freshman. That's not just on special teams, he'll have a lot of playing time on defense if he keeps working hard and improving. He's one of the best defensive players we've recruited."

Fellow freshmen Brent Curvey, DeAndre Jackson, Todd Blythe and Ron Prelow also have an opportunity to hit the field, but nothing has been set.

"Curvey in the defensive line has a real good chance to play this year and DeAndre Jackson at defensive back has a real good chance," McCarney said. "We're taking a look at (Todd) Blythe on all our special teams, and we need to make a decision here in the next few days on him. Obviously, his playing time would be limited at receiver, but he's one of the most impressive kids we've brought in here. Ron Prelow has a chance, but we haven't made a decision on him."


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