IOWA CITY, Iowa – Freshman kicker Keith Duncan isn’t on scholarship at this point, but he is on top of the Iowa football team’s latest depth chart.
The Weddington, N.C., native was listed ahead of sophomores Mick Ellis and Miguel Recinos on the depth chart that was released Friday. Recinos had been listed as the starter throughout spring practice and on the preseason depth chart.
Iowa will face Miami (Ohio) in the season opener on Sept. 3 at Kinnick Stadium.
Third-year sophomore Jay Scheel is listed as the starting split end ahead of second-year sophomore Jerminic Smith. They had been listed as co-starters until Friday. Scheel has only appeared in two games for Iowa and has no catches, while Smith started two games last season and appeared in all 14 games, catching six passes for 141 yards.
Junior Sean Welsh is listed as the starting center, while sophomore James Daniels is the starter at right guard.
Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz told reporters at the Kids Day practice on Aug. 13 that Welsh and Daniels both could play guard or center.
True freshman Nathan Stanley is listed as the co-backup at quarterback with sophomore Tyler Wiegers. Ferentz would prefer to redshirt Stanley this season, but that’ll depend on what happens on the field and with injuries.
"I’d rather redshirt all the freshmen if we can," Ferentz said. "But we also need to do what we can to put our best guys out there."
Defensively, redshirt freshman Anthony Nelson has climbed to the top of the depth chart and now shares one of the starting defensive end spots with sophomore Matt Nelson.
Duncan and Stanley are among eight true freshmen listed on the depth chart. The others are receiver Devonte Young, defensive tackle Cedrick Lattimore, linebackers Amani Jones and Kristian Welch and defensive backs Manny Rugamba and Amani Hooker. All seven of the true freshmen are listed as backups.
There also are seven redshirt freshmen listed on the depth chart.
Though it’s unusual for Iowa to have eight true freshmen listed on the depth chart, especially this early in the season, it’s not unprecedented. Iowa used 10 true freshmen in 2011.
Duncan is poised to become the 18th true freshman to start at least one game under Ferentz, who is entering his 18th season as the Iowa head coach.
Junior Bo Bower has replaced sophomore Aaron Mends as the starter at will linebacker. Mends is now listed as a co-backup with Amani Jones.
Iowa depth chart for Miami (Ohio)
WR – Jay Scheel, Jerminic Smith
LT – Cole Croston, Brett Waechter
LG – Boone Myers, Ross Reynolds
C – Sean Welsh, Lucas LeGrand, Steve Ferentz
RG – James Daniels, Keegan Render
RT – Ike Boettger, Levi Paulson
TE – George Kittle, Peter Pekar
WR – Matt VandeBerg, Ronald Nash
QB – C.J. Beathard, Tyler Wiegers/Nate Stanley
RB – LeShun Daniels, Akrum Wadley
FB – Drake Kulick, Brady Ross/Austin Kelly
DE – Anthony Nelson/Matt Nelson, Sam Brincks
DT – Jaleel Johnson, Cedrick Lattimore
DT – Nathan Bazata, Faith Ekakitie
DE – Parker Hesse, Brady Reiff
OLB – Ben Niemann, Kevin Ward/Kristian Welch
MLB – Josey Jewell, Matt Hockaday
WLB – Bo Bower, Amani Jones/Aaron Mends,
LC – Greg Mabin, Michael Ojemudia
SS – Miles Taylor, Anthony Gair/Amani Hooker
FS – Brandon Snyder, Jake Gervase
RC – Desmond King, Manny Rugamba/Josh Jackson
PT – Ron Coluzzi, Colten Rastetter
PK – Keith Duncan, Mick Ellis/Miguel Recinos