Knott done for remainder of regular season


Jake Knott sits on the bench during the game agianst Baylor on Saturday, Oct. 27, at Jack Trice Stadium. Knott had a total of seven solo tackles in the win.

Jake Calhoun

Senior linebacker Jake Knott will be out for the remainder of the regular season, ISU coach Paul Rhoads confirmed Monday.

Knott, who started 33 consecutive games at Will linebacker, was having shoulder surgery in Chicago on Monday that could possibly mean the end of one of the most illustrious and beloved careers in ISU history.

“He’s special to me because he was the first guy that I got a commitment from as the head football coach,” Rhoads said of Knott at his weekly news conference. “That was a special day in his life and his family’s life, and he’s never forgotten that. 

“All those things make this relationship and my view of him as a player probably a little bit different than some of the others.”

Rhoads said the injury Knott sustained against Oklahoma State on Oct. 20 was different from the tear of the labrum in his left shoulder, but Rhoads did not know enough about it to be able to expound upon it and its extent.

Knott, whose surgery was Monday in Chicago, would not be available for comment until Wednesday afternoon. Updates on his health should be made available when he addresses the media.

“He’s played through a lot of pain, which is a tribute to him, his toughness and his overall selfless desire to be a team player,” Rhoads said. “It was never, ever about Jake Knott; it was always about the Iowa State Cyclones.”

In Knott’s absence, Rhoads said Jeremiah George could be active in both base and nickel defenses — with Knott, George was only active at Mike (middle) linebacker in base. Jevohn Miller would either back up George or remain at Will (weak-side) linebacker, with Matt Morton possibly being thrown in the mix somewhere.

Rhoads said defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Wally Burnham is working on a supplemental rotation for the linebackers that will not be solidified until Saturday’s game against Oklahoma.

“We’re going to run the same stuff and try to get the guy in there and play with him and bring him along as best as we can,” said nickelback Deon Broomfield. “There’s not going to be too much difference in the scheme; they’ve been practicing along with us all year.”

There is a possibility Knott could return for a bowl game if the Cyclones (5-3, 2-3 Big 12) qualify for one, but Rhoads said that will be predicated on what information emerges from the surgery.

“I was hoping to have a little bit more knowledge,” Rhoads said. “I have not received that yet — the severity of what they found. That will all be determined by that.”

With questions surrounding his health leading into last weekend’s Homecoming win against Baylor, Knott started and tallied 11 total tackles in the win. Rhoads said that through “trusted medical advice,” Knott made the decision to play against Baylor and receive season-ending shoulder surgery Monday.

“We didn’t even know he was going to play until like Friday or Saturday,” Broomfield said. “It was close right before the game.

“When we found out that he was going to play, we were excited for him and we really wanted to gather up and get a win and have him go out in a winning way.”

After his 11-tackle performance last Saturday — his 19th-career game of 10-plus tackles — Knott has made 347 career tackles, ranking him sixth all time in ISU history.