Big 12 spring game recap: Iowa State

What happened:

  • Running backs Jeff Woody and James White paced the offenses, and the Gold team won, 23-17.

  • Around 10,000 fans showed up on a sunny day in Ames. After the game, coach Paul Rhoads joked with the media: “It was a beautiful sun-drenched Jack Trice Stadium,” he said. “I can write your opening.”

What we learned:

  • Woody and White stole the show in making their case to back up Alexander Robinson. Woody ran for 70 yards on 14 carries. White ran for 94 yards on 17 carries. "I think Jeff Woody is close to the top of the heap of those three for the No. 2 spot at this point,” Rhoads said. “He’s the same guy every day. He’s always working toward positive yards, but at the same time I heap praise on him, I liked James White’s elusiveness and speed. "He has the ability to make guys miss. He can slip through small holes.”

  • One of the running backs gunning for that No. 2 spot, Beau Blankenship, didn't play after suffering a minor MCL injury in practice on Thursday.

  • Rhoads said this morning he's skeptical of using the word "comfortable" with anything on defense, but he likes the depth he's developed at cornerback with Leonard Johnson, Ter'ran Benton, Jeremy Reeves and incoming juco transfer Anthony Young, who impressed in his first spring. "I think we've got four guys that are capable of playing," Rhoads said. "I think those four guys provide us depth and quality at the cornerback position, and if I was remotely comfortable anywhere, it would be there."

  • Jerome Tiller had a nice game, completing 21 of 32 passes for 200 yards, but Rhoads reiterated what he told me on my visit last week about the status of starter Austen Arnaud: "It is Arnaud's job, and I think Austen Arnaud is, without a doubt, the most improved player on our offensive football team and quite possibly the most improved player on our entire team as we finished up spring drills this Saturday," Rhoads said. For what it's worth, Arnaud completed 14 of 20 passes for 156 yards. Tiller is solid, and his time will come. But right now, it doesn't look like 2010 will be his chance.

They said it:

“We’ve got to play with better vision as a defensive football team. ... They have to play with bigger eyes.”

-- Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads

(Hold your e-mails, Missouri fans. We'll be featuring the Tigers on the blog tomorrow, and the spring game recap will be part of that.)