116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — There wasn’t a Plan B.
“Not really,” Quinn Schulte said Friday afternoon at Iowa’s football media day. “I mean, I was talking to South Dakota State, Iowa State and UNI. But at the end of the day, Iowa was just the best fit, and where I wanted to go.”
A starting quarterback and defensive back for a state championship team at Cedar Rapids Xavier, Schulte certainly could have been a scholarship safety for someone. He was good enough.
But older brother, Bryce, already was a walk-on at Iowa, giving him an up-close-and-personal view of the Hawkeyes program. He wanted in.
Now four years later, he sees himself atop the depth chart at free safety about midway through fall camp, the season opener against South Dakota State approaching quickly three weeks away. And he’s on scholarship now.
Schulte is aiming to replace last year’s starter Jack Koerner, also originally a walk-on from the state of Iowa.
“I think everybody comes here to compete,” Schulte said. “My brother and I tried to come here and do the best that we could every day and try to take advantage of the opportunities that we got.”
“He knows what’s going on,” said Iowa defensive coordinator Phil Parker. “He’s good in his technique, and he has the ability to diagnose plays and see plays and react better than the other guys right now. He’s a quiet kid, goes about his work, he understands it, he watches film, he goes out to practice and pays attention. A hard worker, smart, sees things.”
Schulte comes into this season with five career tackles and an interception, coming late in Iowa’s blowout win last season against Maryland. He spent his true freshman year as a redshirt and scout team wide receiver.
Even though he was still a DB, for all intents and purposes, Iowa was short on bodies at receiver, so he helped out.
“Going against those guys every day on the defensive side was something that was actually very helpful,” Schulte said. “They’re competing their butts off and getting me better, and then I could see how they’re playing. I was still able to be in the film room with Coach Parker, so that was something that was great. To learn from him along the way.”
Parker said he’s impressed by Schulte’s knowledge of the game, pointing out how Schulte is a coach’s kid. Duane Schulte, of course, is Xavier’s hall of fame head man.
“It’s really not a hard game,” Parker said. “You’ve got to read is it run or pass? If it’s pass, what’s your pass spot? If it’s run, what’s your run spot? I think he’s been more consistent than everybody else at that position. He’s done a really good job, as far as that goes.
“Maybe being a quarterback, playing that position, he’s got an understanding of how to attack people.”
Schulte said his personal emphasis in fall camp has been on trying to bring cohesion to the secondary.
“It’s more or less been just trying to build communication and chemistry in the back end,” he said. “Just trying to carry it over from spring ball. We’ve got a lot of good guys in the back end that we’re trying to gel together. Hopefully we can do alright this fall.
“Jack, he always wanted to make sure everybody was on the same page. Because even if we’re all wrong, technically we’re all right at that point. As long as we’re having no mental errors, I think that’s the big thing that we’re looking for in the back end.”
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