Linebacker plans revealed in latest Iowa depth chart

Andrew Logue
Iowa linebacker Reggie Spearman has been suspended for a game after an OWI incident over the weekend. Josey Jewell is slated to take that starting spot, according to the Hawkeyes' depth chart released Monday.

Josey Jewell moved up to a starting linebacker spot on Iowa's latest football depth chart, in place of the suspended Reggie Spearman.

Spearman was charged with OWI early Saturday, and will miss Saturday's game against Northwestern, according to a statement issued by the school.

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound sophomore had started every game this season for the Hawkeyes, making 34 tackles and a sack.

Jewell, a 6-2, 225-pound redshirt freshman, appeared in five games, made seven tackles and also recorded a sack.

So, what's this mean for Iowa?

Distractions and depletion are never good for a defense that has allowed more than 500 total rushing yards in its past two games.

Spearman is athletic, but tends to over-pursue. Jewell has shown promise, but the entire unit must do a better job of tackling.

In case you're curious, Northwestern (3-4, 2-2 Big Ten) ranks 12th in the Big Ten with 127.6 rushing yards per game.

Also absent from the two-deep roster: running backs Damon Bullock, LeShun Daniels and receiver Derrick Willies.

That leaves Mark Weisman (427 yards on 113 carries) and Jordan Canzeri (219 on 54) as Iowa's primary tailbacks.

The Hawkeyes (5-2, 2-1) have been judicious in how they've used Weisman (2,216 career rushing yards), but he's clearly been the most effective option, averaging 3.8 per carry with 10 touchdowns.

Canzeri averages 4.1, but has been slowed by injuries.

The Wildcats, meanwhile, have allowed nine rushing touchdowns in their first seven games.

Dillon Kidd and Connor Kornbrath are sharing Iowa's punting duties. They split time during a 38-31 loss two weeks ago at Maryland and have combined for a 38.5 yard average with 15 of 40 punts being downed inside the 20-yard line.