Welcome back to the official countdown to kickoff! Each day through September 4th we’re highlighting a member of the Iowa football team whose number corresponds with the number of days remaining until football returns to Kinnick Stadium. You can find each of the previous players highlighted in the Countdown to Kickoff stream here. You can also find the full Iowa roster here.
Up next is #64, offensive lineman Kyler Schott.
Another day, another absolute stud from the Iowa Hawkeyes offensive line to highlight: your newest starting right guard, Kyler Schott.
Coggon, IA (North Linn)
6’2”, 294 lbs
2021 Projection: Starting Right Guard
Iowa’s offensive line was a crucial component of Iowa’s offensive success — particularly in the run game — during the shortened 2020 season. But Mark Kallenberg and Alaric Jackson are gone, leaving Tyler Linderbaum and guard Tyler Schott to provide leadership for a group not only replacing multiple starters, but also its coach.
But if past is any indication, Linderbuam and Schott are up for the task.
Schott, a former walk-on turned success story (where have we heard that one before?) played in eight games in the 2019 season — primarily at right guard — playing well enough to earn a scholarship at the end of the season.
He followed up that campaign with a great season in 2020, despite only playing in five games and starting in two, missing three due to illness. His efforts were still strong enough to earn him honorable mention for the All-Big Ten teams at the end of the season. Schott started in two games, one at left and one at right guard, and made a huge impact, particularly for the running game.
Schott is listed as the starter at right guard in 2021. While he and Lindebaum will certainly have to adjust as the season progresses (like many Iowa offensive lines before them), they will also adjust in mentality and mechanics under new offensive line coach George Barnett.
Barnett prioritizes fundamentals in footwork, body positioning in both the run and pass game and confidence. He has likened offensive line play to being defensive back: How does a player respond after a poor rep?
“He just brings another aspect of offensive line play,” Schott said. “We had Coach Polasek, who had his own philosophies, and now we have Coach Barnett, who has his own ways. We’ve been lucky to bring more people who have more views of offensive line play and ways to make us better as players.”
Schott was named the No. 8 interior offensive lineman in the country by Pro Football Focus (Linderbaum was listed at the top, for obvious reasons) and surely will be on more watch lists to come as the season nears. Schott is also a candidate who can certainly climb up a lot of NFL Mock Draft boards as the season goes on. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him as one of the first few lineman taken in the draft, right along with Linderbaum.
How high he climbs remains to be seen, but we know Schott will have plenty of opportunity to prove himself with Iowa’s emphasis on the run led by Tyler Goodson. I think Schott and co. will be up to the challenge. How could you not think that, when he’s giving quotes like this about his up-and-coming guys on the OL?
“I watched Sean Welsh, I watched James Daniels,” Schott said. “Learning from them while they were here so the younger guys learning from now, they know what to do when their name is called.
“They know what Iowa football is and what we expect: to block people and run the ball.”