clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Offensive Players to Watch: Iowa State @ Cincinnati

Skyline Chili doesn’t make you sick.

TCU v Iowa State Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images

Let me start this week’s articles off with a gif I have been waiting to use for a while now:

Ames College came out strong and looked amazing in the Jack Trice Legacy uniforms and anyone who thinks they were nude on TV can go shove it! Last weekend’s game was (chefs kiss) perfection.

Iowa State: Running Backs - Eli Sanders

During their game against TCU, Iowa State showcased a strong run game. Eli Sanders led the backfield with 16 attempts for almost 100 yards, missing the century mark by just one, and scored a touchdown. Abu “Lightning” Sama made an impressive 55-yard run for a touchdown, with no one able to stop him. Norton also contributed with 47 yards, and even Carson Hansen had two carries in the game. Overall, the Cyclones’ running game was on full display.

In the past, we have demonstrated our proficiency in passing the ball. However, it would not be easy to assess our rushing abilities based on a single game. Eli Sanders and the others will attempt to maintain their momentum against a Bearcat defense that has an impressive defensive line and has limited their opponents to only 100 rushing yards per game.

Cincinnati: Xzavier Henderson

I was talking to my buddy Bearcat Matt over in the land of Skyline Chili and here is what he had to say about their offense: Xzavier will be the go-to target, but their quarterback (Emory Jones) struggles in the redzone to make plays. Their running back room is a run-by-committee with Kiner being their bell cow and the Montgomerys (not related) are their more agile pair. It’s also going to be fun seeing an all-red with us there for their homecoming game as well!

Xzavier has 30 receptions for 414 yards (13.8 average) and one touchdown. He previously played for Florida for three years, during which he recorded 73 receptions, 835 yards, and 5 touchdowns. It’s worth noting that Emory Jones, who was also Xzavier’s teammate at Florida during the 2020 and 2021 seasons, is his current quarterback, so there is a level of trust between them. In the upcoming game, Xzavier and Emory will be facing a tough and fully healthy Iowa State secondary that is currently ranked third in the nation with 10 interceptions. The secondary is led by Jeremiah Cooper (4) and Beau Freyler (3), who are ranked first and seventh, respectively, in the league. Given the expected close matchup, the Bearcats quarterback and wide receiver will need to be in sync to overcome the strong Iowa State defense.