Iowa football releases depth chart ahead of 2021 season opener against Indiana

Chad Leistikow
Hawk Central

Eight days before its first game of the 2021 season, the Iowa football program provided a little more personnel clarity.

The Hawkeyes on Friday released their Week 1 depth chart for the Sept. 4 opener against Indiana (2:30 p.m. CT, Big Ten Network) at Kinnick Stadium.

Iowa starting quarterback Spencer Petras, middle, is flanked by backups Alex Padilla (left) and Deuce Hogan (right).

Not many surprises or changes from the preseason depth chart we saw in late July. That starts with the quarterback line, where Spencer Petras (as expected) is holding down the No. 1 role with Alex Padilla No. 2. Petras will make his ninth consecutive start next weekend and will look to extend his six-game winning streak.

The Kyler Schott hay-baling injury (a fracture in his right foot) will almost certainly keep the fifth-year senior right guard out of the Indiana opener. Justin Britt has moved to the No. 1 line at right guard officially and could be in line for his first career start.

The depth chart should be taken with grains (or scoops) of salt. It doesn't necessarily tell us who will be the starting offensive line, considering the Hawkeyes are still listing Jack Plumb as the No. 1 left tackle even though Mason Richman was holding down that spot during the "Kids Day" scrimmage and has been shown with the first team in recent practice photos.

More clarity may come from Kirk Ferentz's game-week press conference at 1:45 p.m. Tuesday.

The Hawkeyes also have made a small but notable tweak at linebacker. Jack Campbell was previously listed as the No. 1 weak-side linebacker, but he's now No. 1 at middle linebacker, with Seth Benson sliding to the weak-side. Both guys can play in both spots, but it's a recognition that the sizable Campbell will be at the center of Phil Parker's defense. Walk-on Kyler Fisher also has moved into the No. 2 line as backup weak-side linebacker, replacing Mike Timm. Fisher has made his mark on special teams, and the product of Southeast Valley High School looks to be forcing his way into Iowa's plans.

One of the most interesting position battles, backup tight end, is still in the column of redshirt freshman Luke Lachey. That's a key spot for the Hawkeyes, who often use double-tight end sets. There's probably a good chance a third tight end plays next Saturday, too.

The 18th-ranked Hawkeyes are 3½-point home favorites against the No. 17 Hoosiers. About 3,000 tickets remained as of Friday, according to the university.

Hawkeyes' Week 1 depth chart

The Iowa sports-information office distributed game notes and a two-deep Friday for the Hawkeyes' Sept. 4 opener against Indiana.


WR: Tyrone Tracy Jr. (5-11, 201), RS junior; Keagan Johnson (6-1, 197), freshman

TE: Sam LaPorta (6-4, 249), junior; Luke Lachey (6-6, 248), RS freshman

LT: Jack Plumb (6-7, 296), RS junior; Mason Richman (6-6, 296), RS freshman

LG: Cody Ince (6-4, 282), RS junior; Tyler Elsbury (6-5, 301), RS freshman

C: Tyler Linderbaum (6-3, 290), RS junior; Matt Fagan (6-5, 287), RS junior

RG: Justin Britt (6-4, 302), RS sophomore; Josh Volk (6-4, 308), RS freshman

RT: Nick DeJong (6-6, 292), RS sophomore; Connor Colby (6-6,  298), freshman

WR: Nico Ragaini (6-0, 191), RS junior; Charlie Jones (6-0, 188), RS senior

QB: Spencer Petras (6-5, 233), RS junior; Alex Padilla (6-1, 197), RS sophomore

RB: Tyler Goodson (5-10, 199), junior; Ivory Kelly-Martin (5-10, 200), RS senior

FB: Monte Pottebaum (6-1, 246), RS junior; Turner Pallisard (6-0, 245), RS junior

PK: Caleb Shudak (5-8, 178), sixth-year senior

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LE: John Waggoner (6-5, 266), RS junior; Joe Evans (6-2, 248), RS junior

LT: Noah Shannon (6-0, 289), RS junior; Lukas Van Ness (6-5, 264), RS freshman

RT: Yahya Black (6-5, 287), RS freshman; Logan Lee (6-5, 277), RS sophomore

RE: Zach VanValkenburg (6-4, 267), sixth-year senior, Deontae Craig (6-3, 263), RS freshman

MLB: Jack Campbell (6-5, 243), junior; Jay Higgins (6-2, 227), RS freshman

WLB: Seth Benson (6-1, 229), RS junior; Kyler Fisher (5-11, 225), RS sophomore

Cash/OLB: Dane Belton (6-1, 205), junior; Jestin Jacobs (6-4, 236), RS sophomore

LCB: Matt Hankins (6-0, 185), RS senior, Jermari Harris (6-1, 185), RS sophomore

SS: Kaevon Merriweather (6-0, 211), RS junior; Sebastian Castro (5-11, 204), RS sophomore

FS: Jack Koerner (6-0, 204), RS senior; Quinn Schulte (6-1, 201), RS sophomore

RCB: Riley Moss (6-1, 194), senior; Terry Roberts (5-10, 180), RS junior

P: Tory Taylor (6-4, 231), sophomore

Long snapper: Austin Spiewak (6-1, 237), sixth-year senior

Punt/kick returner: Charlie Jones (6-0, 188), RS senior