June 24th, 2016. About a month after Iowa State first offered the Tight End out of Norman, Oklahoma, Charlie Kolar was a Cyclone. What started with a guy whose only offers before his commitment were Iowa State, Army, Air Force, and Stephen F. Austin... would end as one of the single hardest match-ups for opposing teams and numerous mentions as the best tight end in football.
What is Charlie Kolar’s secret in just how good he’s gotten? Well, I don’t entirely know. Maybe it’s because he grew up an Oklahoma Sooners fan (and who could blame him, he’s from Norman and was even teammates with Sooner Basketball Legend Trae Young) and they never offered him. Maybe it’s the fact that he’s just got an incredible work ethic and is never satisfied with where he’s at:
Chase Allen getting emotional in post-game. "Nobody sees the way Charlie prepares. He can accomplish anything in life. I love him to death and he works his ass off."— Brent Blum (@brentblum) November 20, 2021
But maybe. Just maybe. Charlie might be onto something with how he eats his spaghetti.
As is no secret to Cyclone Nation, Charlie enjoys his spaghetti... with his hands?
Yeah, that’s right folks. I’m choosing to believe that Charlie has gotten where he is in life, the best tight end in college football. The toughest matchup for defenses everywhere. The fail-safe for Brock Purdy, Tom Manning, and the offense. A Mackey Award Finalist. Because the spaghetti gives him powers to catch literally anything and everything.
Regardless of whether you choose to follow the path of the spaghetti hands or not, it’s no wonder the man finds himself in the Mackey Award conversation week after week. He works his ass off and it just pays off watching him play. He has the smarts to find weak spots in the zone, he has the hands to make tip-toe snags on the sideline or one-handed touchdown catches, and he’s big enough to overpower players in the secondary to be on the receiving end of contested jump balls.
Charlie is the definition of what it means to be a Cyclone. From a whole two other FBS Division 1 offers (outside Iowa State) to being the best tight end in the country, it’s always a pleasure watching #88 run out onto the field every weekend. Over his four-year career with the Cyclones, Charlie has racked up 159 catches, 2,083 yards, and 22 touchdowns. To put that into perspective, in the history of Iowa State football, only 4 players have more catches, only 4 have more yards, and only 2 have more touchdowns. When you put yourself in the same realm of guys like Allen Lazard, Todd Blythe, Hakeem Butler, and Lane Danielson, you’re probably pretty damn good. Here’s to a hell of a career.
For getting up every morning representing Cyclone Nation right.
For having that never-quit attitude every step on the field.
For helping change the culture here at Iowa State.
Thank you, Charlie Kolar.