Johnnie Lang might be an awful pick to watch because he could end this game with two touches for nine total yards, but by all indications that won’t be the case.
Lang has been mentioned a lot by Campbell leading up to the season, but the redshirt sophomore doesn’t fit the profile of a frontrunner for the job.
Last season he rushed for less than 100 yards all season and the year before, he was granted a medical redshirt.
Whatever Lang has done in camp has caught the attention of the coaches, so look for him to split carries with any of the five running backs vying for the position — but most likely freshman Breece Hall and redshirt senior Sheldon Croney.
What the Cyclones want out of the position is someone who can do a little bit of everything and with the specialized backs like Kene Nwangwu and Croney, they might not get that. The other two backs are true freshmen which means Lang has the chance to step into that role.
McElvain, you might remember, committed to Iowa State in 2017 as a walk-on but later committed to Northern Iowa.
After redshirting his first season, he will play his first college game against none other than the team he was originally committed to.
McElvain is also talented enough to win the starting job at Northern Iowa as a freshman and he will have a chip on his shoulder as he goes up against Iowa State.
The quarterback battle will be against two underclassmen who can escape the pocket and create with their legs.
Purdy is a more pass-first product, while McElvain tucks the ball and runs quite a bit.
His speed was evident from his commitment to Iowa State, where the plan was to have him play defensive back.
The Iowa State defense won’t have a lot of game tape to rely on, and McElvain’s unique set of skills might give the Cyclones trouble.