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15 Days Until Iowa Football: Tyler Goodson & Dallas Craddieth

Two talented sophomores share the #15 jersey. One hopes to break into the ranks of the nation’s elite running backs, while the other hopes to break onto the depth chart.

NCAA Football: Illinois at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

With only 15 days until the start of Iowa football, BHGP continues its countdown to kickoff with two promising young players who share the same number but hope to make an impact on opposite sides of the ball this year.

Tyler Goodson (So.)

Suwanee, GA (North Gwinnett)

5’10”, 200 lbs.

2020 Projection: Starting running back

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Dallas Craddieth (RS So.)

St. Louis, MO (Hazelwood Central)

5’11”, 196 lbs.

2020 Projection: Reserve defensive back

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Let’s start on offense with Tyler Goodson, one of the most exciting skill players to come through the Iowa program in some time. Goodson came to Iowa as a highly decorated high school athlete after winning the Georgia Player of the Year as a senior at North Gwinnett High. While many expected Goodson to take a back seat to returning veterans Mekhi Sargent, Toren Young, and Ivory Kelly-Martin, Goodson proved too gifted to keep off the field as a redshirt freshman. The talented young player elbowed his way into the rotation and was a consistent contributor for much of the season before eventually emerging as the starting running back in Iowa’s upset victory over Minnesota, a game in which Goodson shined with an impressive 7.2 yards-per-carry average. Goodson’s best game of the season would come two weeks later on the road against Nebraska, where the freshman would gouge the Husker defense for 116 yards and a touchdown on only 13 carries, propelling Iowa’s offense in a contest in which the passing game simply was not working. By season’s end, Goodson had become the first true freshman in program history to lead the team in rushing yards.

Goodson’s freshman numbers were solid (638 rushing yards, 166 receiving yards, 5 touchdowns), but greater things are expected from him as a sophomore, as evidenced by him being named to the Doak Walker watch list along with several pre-season All-Conference teams. Fortunately for Iowa fans, Goodson has the skills to support this hype. The sophomore possesses a combination of breakaway speed,

and shiftiness

that make him an absolute nightmare to tackle in the open field, but also runs with the toughness required of a Big Ten running back.

As Goodson continues to add strength and grow as a pass protector, he will have even more opportunities to shine in Iowa’s offense, and has the potential to emerge as a true feature back for the Hawkeyes.

On the other side of the ball, Dallas Craddieth is hoping to accomplish in his sophomore year what Goodson managed to do as a true freshman. Craddieth was Iowa’s highest rated recruit of the 2018 class per 247 and was a highly regarded prospect after earning Missouri All-State and All-Conference honors three times and being named his conference’s Defensive Player of the Year as a senior. However, Craddieth has yet to make the impact on the field that many fans expected when he arrived in Iowa City. The defensive back redshirted in 2018 and saw action in only one game in 2019 (Middle Tennessee) in which he recorded no statistics. Many fans believed Geno Stone’s departure for the NFL would enable Craddieth to break into the rotation this year, yet his name does not appear on the fall depth chart released by the team yesterday.

Craddieth is still young and has plenty of time to earn his way onto the field, but he may have to wait his turn to do so, as all of the players listed above him on the depth chart have multiple years of eligibility remaining. Football careers are defined by three things: talent, hard work, and opportunity. Craddieth certainly has the talent to play at this level, and there’s nothing to suggest that he’s been anything other than a hard-worker and excellent teammate throughout his career. All Craddieth is missing is opportunity, but barring injuries he may need to wait another season for his to arrive.