MAILBAG: 4-2-5, hoops rotation and Kanye West

Every week Chris Williams and I will be alternating between doing mailbag and thoughts columns. He has thoughts this week so you will hear from him later.

On Wednesday morning, I put out a call for questions on Twitter and forums and this is what we got. Enjoy.

The_Gent on the forums: Will we struggle more to defend power run teams like Iowa, Oklahoma and Kansas State in order to better defend the Big 12 conference as a whole with the 4-2-5 defense?

JS: I don’t think so. I actually think the 4-2-5 will fit Iowa State’s schedule better than the 3-4 did.

The defense is designed to more easily shift based on what the offense is doing. If the offense is lining up in heavy formations with a bunch of tight ends, you can bring in the Sam linebacker and go to essentially a traditional 4-3.

Against teams that are looking to spread out the defense, you can bring in the Star as more of a nickel/hybrid defensive back making it the 4-2-5. The linebackers should also be able to flow more freely with more down linemen to take up blocks.

Jeff Woody did a much better of explaining all this stuff on CFTV-Live last week.

CyArob on the forums: Who’s the next basketball commit?

JS: The best bet right now is probably Texas combo guard Darius McNeill. He’ll be in Ames for an official visit this weekend.

For what it’s worth, I think this kid is a stud.

Brandon on the forums: Which offensive lineman will have the best season?

JS: The closer we get to the season, the higher I get on Patrick Scoggins. I think a lot of people forgot about him after he injured his knee on the third day of fall camp last season.

From all accounts, he’s an absolute bulldog in the middle of the line. He might not be the traditional size for a Big 12 offensive lineman, but it sounds like he’s tough as nails and really strong.

cyclones500 on the forums: If you were King of the Big 12, what are the first 2 schools you would add through expansion (in order)?

JS: I, Jared Stansbury, as King of the Big 12, declare that Nebraska and Missouri shall return to our lands. Long live the Telephone Trophy!!

(Seriously though, Houston and Cincinnati would be my choices.)

cycloneted on the forums: Who would you like to see lead the team in sacks this year? Who will lead the team in sacks?

JS: Demond Tucker.

jbindm on the forums: Fast forward to Nov 27. At the end of the football season, who are your individual award winners?

JS: Offensive MVP: Allen Lazard

Defensive MVP: Demond Tucker

Special Teams MVP: Colin Downing

Newcomer of the Year: Deshaunte Jones

Most Improved Player: Vernell Trent

CyTwins on the forums: What’s our basketball rotation look like this year?

JS: Starters: Monte Morris, Matt Thomas, Naz Mitrou-Long, Deonte Burton, Merrill Holden

Bench: Donovan Jackson, Nick Weiler-Babb, Darrell Bowie, Solomon Young, Simeon Carter

JS: I’ll take the over. They had four last season and I wouldn’t be surprised if they had four again.

JS: I have no clue, but in case you didn’t hear, I’m a Vikings fan now. I’m not going to pretend I’m an expert on NFL free agent quarterbacks. That said, I do know of one.

I think it might be time for Uncle Rico to get his shot in the pros.

JS: This is my part nobody else speak.


Jared Stansbury


Jared a native of Clarinda, Iowa, started as the Cyclone Fanatic intern in August 2013, primarily working as a videographer until starting on the women’s basketball beat prior to the 2014-15 season. Upon earning his Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Iowa State in May 2016, Jared was hired as the site’s full-time staff writer, taking over as the primary day-to-day reporter on football and men’s basketball. He was elevated to the position of managing editor in January 2020. He is a regular contributor on 1460 KXNO in Des Moines and makes regular guest appearances on radio stations across the Midwest. Jared resides in Ankeny with his four-year-old puggle, Lolo.

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