1)IT'S AUSTEN'S TEAM-Junior quarterback Austen Arnaud enters the 2009 season in a completely different position than last year. He is now the undisputed starting quarterback and leader of this offense after competing all last fall against Phillip Bates. With Bates having transferred, Arnaud has taken over the job as the clear starter and now must show that he is worthy of that position running new offensive coordinator Tom Herman's spread offense. If Austen steps up and begins to show great consistency with his throws he could end up having a huge season for the Cyclones.
2)A-ROB READY TO EXPLODE-Both Paul Rhoads and Tom Herman have made it very clear that Alexander Robinson will clearly be playing the most at running back. He fits the spread offense perfectly and if he gets off to a solid early start on Thursday night the passing game should really end up becoming tough to defend.
3)OFFENSIVE LINE MUST DOMINATE- The bottom line is that Iowa State returns a very experienced and talented offensive line that needs to dominate the Bison early on offense. If they can open holes for Robinson and protect Arnaud the Cyclones should put up big numbers and win going away. Depth at wide receiver has led to an interesting amount of wide receivers that could see playing time and they should flourish in the new spread offense.