Next up in our offseason break down of every Iowa State recruit is Jirehl Brock, a 5’11” , 205 pound running back. Since he’s a four star, Brock is one of the biggest recruits in Iowa State history alongside his future teammate, Breece Hall. Brock comes from Quincy, Illinois, where is ran for 2,158 yards this past season.
With David Montgomery in the NFL, there are some huge shoes to be filled. Jirehl, along with Breece Hall, Sheldon Croney Jr., Kene Ngwangu, and Johnnie Lang, will be tasked with replacing the former Iowa State star.
One thing going against Brock is that he has yet to move on campus. Unlike, Breece Hall, practicing with the team. Jirehl is not behind by any means, but he will go through the normal freshman season, unlike the players who move in early.
Brock is big and muscular, and uses that to his advantage when he runs. If the defender isn’t lower than he is or at a good angle, he will easily break the tackle. He also has great balance, which is another key attribute that makes him hard to bring him down. Since he does use his bigger frame to his advantage, he is more of a north to south runner and focused on going through people, not juking them.
However, that doesn’t mean he isn’t elusive. Brock is still more than capable of breaking plays loose in the second level. He is super quick and has great footwork that makes the defense stay conservative when tackling him.
On this play, Jirehl Brock shows off his tremendous power, balance, elusiveness, and breakaway speed. To start, he didn’t get the best push from his line, and it appeared that he was going to get brought down in the backfield. Instead, he made the man miss before breaking a couple tackles at the second level. Once he got past the linebackers, he had a dirty sidestep to make the corner back miss before showing off his tremendous breakaway speed to score the touchdown.
Brock put his entire skillset on full display during this play.
This is a similar play to the last. This time he got a better hole from his offensive line and he made a lethal cut to go up field. He had a couple smaller defenders dive at his feet, but his balance helped him shed those pretty easily before making his way down the field for a touchdown.
Iowa State loved to go off tackle last year, and it appears that Brock excels out there as well. The way he makes his cuts shortly before accelerating is very encouraging for what’s to come.
There isn’t much to talk about here other than just watch in awe as Brock shreds that poor kid’s ankles. The defender is backpedaling and off-balance because odds are that Brock has already pulled off something stupid this game. He takes advantage of the defensive back being in bad position by making a simple, yet effective cut.
The fact that Brock can make defenders miss in a multitude of ways will benefit him a ton in college.
This is about as north to south as you can get. Brock took the handoff in a wishbone formation, which I can assure you we won’t see that in Ames. However, he follows the hole made by his offensive line and ran straight through three or four defenders. He doesn’t make any fancy cuts or try to juke, he just uses his pure power to get to the second level. After he gets there, he shows off his elite breakaway speed to cap off a 55-yard touchdown.
The passing game is how Brock can make his biggest impact as a freshman. Since there will be a ton of competition for carries, Brock will probably have a to find touches elsewhere. A role in the short passing game is a possibility for Brock, because that’s one of his strong areas.
This play isn’t a short route, but more of a wheel route. Brock runs a great route and he created separation with a little physicality, then high-points the ball with two defenders in the area. The defensive backs timed his landing really poorly which led to him scoring a touchdown pretty easily.
The wheel route is a staple in Iowa State’s passing offense when it comes to running backs. If I had to guess, we could see a lot of this in the fall.
I am not trying to put unrealistic expectations on this kid by saying this, but Jirehl Brock’s style is very similar to that of none other than David Montgomery. The way that Brock uses his size, strength, and balance to maneuver his way through the defense is something that Iowa State fans were used to for three years while watching Montgomery.
I don’t want to say that Brock will have the career of Montgomery or put up similar stats to him, because the odds are that he doesn’t. However, the style that Brock plays with lays a foundation to that of Montgomery. If Brock is as hard of a worker as Montgomery, the sky is the limit for him.
It appears that Brock’s high school team ran a traditional midwestern, spread-style offense, so the transition into Iowa State’s scheme should be fairly effortless, as Brock thrives on powers and counters. Matt Campbell and Tom Manning will find a way to incorporate Brock into the offense in an effective way.
Jirehl Brock is going to be great in the Cardinal & Gold. He has all of the pieces in place to become one of the best running backs in the Big 12 alongside Breece Hall. The combination of his power and elusiveness will make him a constant threat in the offense.
I can’t envision Brock playing a huge role as a freshman, considering that he won’t be on campus until the middle of summer, but that doesn’t mean he can’t make an impact at all. There will be plenty of chances for Brock to see the field in his first year, even if he’s not starting. Special teams is always an area of need, and Iowa State has loved to get multiple running backs their reps.
The duo of Jirehl Brock and Breece Hall is going to be awesome throughout their careers, it is going to be so much fun watching both of them mold into superstars.