AP NEWS

Iowa State’s Montgomery dealing with injury

October 4, 2018

AMES, Iowa – Iowa State running back David Montgomery left Saturday’s game against TCU late with an injury.

Coach Matt Campbell revealed on Tuesday during his weekly press conference that Montgomery had been dealing with injury since the first play of a game that doesn’t count.

“He was playing banged up since the first carry he had this football season in our rainout game,” Campbell said. “He’s been dinged up – nothing terrible. A lot of it is deep bruising and pain that you just have to fight through. Not easy and a lot of credit to him and how he’s playing with him not being 100 percent. Unfortunately, running back is a position where, besides maybe other than the early part of fall camp, you never feel like you’re 100 percent. He’s a pretty tough cookie.”

Montgomery has recorded back-to-back games with over 100 yards rushing and Campbell said even those his numbers won’t blow you away, he believes it’s the best Montgomery has ever played the running back position. He’s hitting the holes correctly and letting his blocks develop – before, Montgomery freelanced.

Campbell has to find a balance of playing Montgomery and making sure he’s still able to play at the end of the season.

“I think you have to be smart,” Campbell said. “One nice thing that I feel more comfortable in, is you’ve seen guys get in, in that running back spot in the last two weeks. Johnnie (Lang) has gotten more carries, Sheldon (Croney’s) done a nice job, Kene (Nwangwu) and Mike (Warren) are guys that we know are available to us and we have to probably find ways to continue to use them.

“If I had the perfect answer, I would tell you. But when it’s a critical situation, you want to put the ball in your best players’ hands. I’m not naïve to that and it’s something I really believe in. I think we’ve seen David get into a really great rhythm the last two weeks.”

KYLE KEMPT UPDATE

Iowa State quarterback Kyle Kempt will not play this week against No. 21 Oklahoma State Matt Campbell said. The sixth-year quarterback hurt his knee three weeks ago against Iowa and has been rehabbing since.

“I think the closest we’ll see him being ready potentially for next week,” Campbell said. “Kyle’s out of his brace, which is big. I’m really excited that he is making great movement forward. I think you can see a relief on his face in terms of it’s getting better. If there’s anybody in our program that’s ready to get out and play, it’s certainly Kyle Kempt. I think it will only continue to move forward and probably have a better update next week at this time.”

WILLIE HARVEY CONTINUES TO BE CONSISTENT

Linebacker Willie Harvey has been a four-year starter for the Cyclones but he’s never grabbed many headlines. He’s recorded over 75 tackles the last two seasons and recorded 59 as a freshman. So far this season, he’s second on the team in tackles with 29 tackles.

“Yeah, I think Willie is one of those guys that if you just cut open, just pure talent on our football team, Willie’s maybe got as much of it as anybody,” Campbell said. “He’s a guy that he can run like a safety. He’s a guy that’s physical. He may be one of our best pressure players in terms of blitz ability, what he can do. And physical at the point of attack in terms of setting an edge at times in the run game.

“But I think what Willie’s done for himself and Willie would tell you this, is he’s gotten better every year. He has really strained to become the best version of himself and I think what we’ve seen at least in the first four football games this year is improvement. Is he perfect yet? No. But is he a guy that I’m really excited (about) because he’s working to become that? Yes. They sky’s the limit for Willie Harvey. He’s a really talented football player and what I love is he’s playing consistent football right now in the first four games of the season and that’s good for all of us.”

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