No. 39: WR Don Shumpert
WIDE RECEIVER DON SHUMPERT
Arrival: Some careers feel as though they are on rocket skates. Wide receiver Don Shumpert will be a junior this season. This feels like maybe the quickest career in Iowa history. As a true freshman, the St. Louis native jumped in on kick coverage and maybe a few other special teams. He was in and out of the lineup with a toe injury.
Last season, he chipped in on special teams and smelled some real action when Keenan Davis injured an ankle and Marvin McNutt missed a few plays against Michigan State (I think it was Michigan State).
We are in love with numbers in our results society and Shumpert goes into his junior season without any. The 6-3, 190-pounder is still looking for his first career reception.
Without knowing how the wide receiver room works, you have to give Shumpert a "team-first" award. Not only did he run into action on special teams as a true freshman, he also slid over to wide receiver after originally being pegged to come in as a safety.
Most coaches will tell you they can work with that.
2012 Takeoff: You all saw Shumpert this spring. Filling in for injured Keenan Davis on the first team, he had four receptions for 59 yards. He also had a fumble on a short catch. After the scrimmage, wide receiver coach Erik Campbell had Shumpert, a junior, take a ball and do five push-ups every 5 yards all the way down the field.
The competition for No. 3 WR is always intense. There might not be another position on the team with such a clear "point A to point B" path. Today's No. 3 WR is tomorrow's McNutt.
During his spring press conference, Campbell didn't say a whole lot about Shumpert, mentioning him behind senior Steven Staggs and junior Jordan Cotton. What you saw in spring was a receiver who could get behind the defense, but who also dropped a few passes and fumbled. Shumpert will have to shake the inconsistency tag.The fact that he went in for Davis during the spring scrimmage says Shumpert is in the running for No. 3.