Kolar, Allen named to award watch lists

Then-sophomore tight end Charlie Kolar gets ready to catch the pass that would score for Iowa State against the TCU Horned Frogs on Oct. 5, 2019. Iowa State won 49-24.

Tom Turner

Iowa State tight ends Charlie Kolar and Chase Allen were named on the John Mackey Award Watch List, given yearly to the nation’s best tight end. Senior center Colin Newell has been named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List, which is given yearly to the nation’s best center.

The John Mackey Award was established in 2000 and awards the best tight end who exemplifies sportsmanship, play, community values and academics.

Kolar — a Norman, Oklahoma, native — returns for his senior season as one of the best tight ends in the country. Kolar was close to opting in to the draft but instead came back for one more season. He is a two-time All-American and two-time First Team All-Big 12 selection, and he was one of three finalists for the Mackey Award in 2020.

Kolar had 44 receptions for 591 yards and seven touchdowns in 11 games last year, which was a team high. His seven touchdown catches tied for seventh on Iowa State’s season list. Coming into the 2021 season, Kolar is projected to break many tight end records at Iowa State.

Allen, who will return for his sixth season at Iowa State, will have a larger role with the departure of Dylan Soehner. In Allen’s career, he has totaled 48 receptions, 526 receiving yards and four touchdowns in his career.

In 2020, Allen finished with 19 catches for 236 years and two touchdowns. Allen has also been named to the All-Big 12 Second Team selection three times. The duo will be a threat in not just the Big 12 but in the nation. Both Allen and Kolar could have great 2021 seasons as the Cyclones enter one of their most promising seasons.

Newell was a part of one of the most improved lines in college football in 2020. Newell, originally from Ames, started all 12 games and was a First Team All-Big 12 recipient for the Cyclones. Newell will enter his senior season with 26 career starts under his belt.

Iowa State will return all of its starting linemen from last year, including Trevor Downing, the starting left guard who got injured in the first game of the 2020 season. Sean Foster (left tackle), Trevor Downing (left guard), Newell (center), Darrell Simmons Jr. (right guard) and Jake Remsburg (right tackle) is the projected starting line.

Newell is one of the most important players on the field at the center position. Whether is it calling out defenses or changing blocking assignments, Newell always has to be ready. Along with the other lineman, Newell was a big part of the success of Big 12 rushing leader Breece Hall.

In the 2020 season, Newell and the other linemen allowed the fewest sacks in the Big 12 at just 14. He also helped the team break the school record of rushing touchdowns at 31 and helped post the second-best scoring offense at 32.9 in school history.