As BHGP continues its countdown to the kickoff of Iowa’s 2022 football campaign, we profile a young member of Iowa’s linebacking corps who will look to distinguish himself this season in hopes of playing a larger role in 2023.
Karson Sharar – RS Freshman
Iowa Falls, IA (Iowa Falls-Alden)
6’2”, 224 lbs.
2022 Projection: Reserve linebacker
Despite being a two-way high school standout who earned first team All-State honors as a senior and second team honors as a junior, Karson Sharar received little buzz as a D1 football recruit. Sharar was ranked as the 2021 class’s 1345th best prospect in the 247 composite rankings and received no other FBS offers aside from Iowa’s. However, the Hawkeyes made a bet that Sharar, a versatile athlete who once held a scholarship offer to play basketball at Drake, had the upside to develop into a real contributor at linebacker.
Sharar did not record any statistics in the four games he played during his redshirt season, but there are signs that Iowa’s bet on the potential of the young linebacker is starting to pay off. With Iowa’s top three linebackers missing time this spring due to injuries, Sharar was given an opportunity to assume a much larger role in the Hawkeye defense than might otherwise be given to a redshirt freshman. Sharar seems to have taken advantage of this opening; he scored on a pick-six during Iowa’s final spring practice, and linebackers coach Seth Wallace mentioned Sharar as one of the players who had stood out the most during the early portions of spring football.
Sharar is unlikely to see the field much this season beyond special teams, assuming Jack Campbell, Seth Benson, and Jestin Jacobs can avoid the injury bug. However, Sharar’s versatility bodes well for both his current and future aspirations for greater playing time, as the coaches have given him reps at all three linebacker positions. Whichever position Sharar ultimately settles on, expect him to be a major contender to fill one of Iowa’s vacant linebacker spots next season.