Iowa State wants to be a smart football team. Coach Paul Rhoads emphasizes it every week. That demand is probably most important for his quarterback as the coach has called QB the most important position on the team.Quarterbacks are like coaches. They make the calls, set the adjustments and lead in the huddle, at practice and in the film room. Jared Barnett has demonstrated an ability to lead and inspire his teammates. Not surprisingly, he is a coach’s kid. Barnett has been around the game. He has an understanding of the game and a natural ability to command. “Jared is a smart player, a student of the game, a coach’s son,” Rhoads said Monday. “(He possesses) all of those characteristics that go along with a guy, who probably just has marginal talent. He zeroes in on what needs to be done to be successful.” Rhoads is a coach’s son, too. He was probably a smart football player, too. When asked about his playing abilities, Rhoads laughed and told me he “wasn’t even a marginal athlete.” But, he found a way to be successful. It’s probably not a stretch to think that Duke Barnett and Cecil Rhoads, fathers of the quarterback and coach, had a lot of talks with their sons at the dinner table about being smart football players. If true, it appears the sons must have been listening.
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