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Player to Watch: Kamari Cotton-Moya

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The hard-hitting safety will be key against the Pokes.

NCAA Football: Northern Iowa at Iowa State Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, I pegged Brian Peavy as the player to watch in anticipation of his matchup with David Sills. Outside of Sills’ touchdown reception, the talented receiver was laregly absent. In general, if you never hear a cornerback’s name called, that’s usually a good thing.

Kamari Cotton-Moya

The talented senior safety is best known for his bone crushing hits and his penchant for taking interceptions to the house. However, his coverage has been inconsistent over the course of his career. At times, he can be baited into dropping coverage to make a play on underneath routes, leaving the defense vulnerable to deep plays.

This season, KCM has been much more disciplined in coverage, becomig a major factor in Iowa State’s stout "bend without breaking" defensive scheme. His improvement will be tested this weekend though, as James Washigton and a fearsome Oklahoma State offense come to Ames with one of the most explosive passing attacks in the country.

KCM will be charged with staying disciplined and helping over the top when Washington inevitably runs his deep post and go routes. If he can take away the deep ball, Oklahoma State will be stripped of its most valuable asset. From there, the defense can force underneath routes and make the Pokes play outside their comfort zone on offense.