Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State football notes: Why Charlie Kolar stayed committed after Oklahoma State offered

Norman native 'couldn't be happier where I ended up'

Iowa State tight end Charlie Kolar runs on the field during a game against Texas Tech on Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020, at Jac
Iowa State tight end Charlie Kolar runs on the field during a game against Texas Tech on Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020, at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames. (Charlie Neibergall/Associated Press)

AMES — Iowa State tight end Charlie Kolar wasn’t heavily recruited out of high school.

The Norman, Okla., native never got a scholarship offer from Oklahoma, something that still bothers him to this day.

“Obviously (Oklahoma) was a good team win, but it was a little extra special for me,” Kolar said. “I grew up a few minutes from the stadium as a die-hard OU fan. I have a ton of respect for that whole program and coaching staff but I took offense when I didn’t get an offer. I know (former) coach (Bob) Stoops and coach (Lincoln) Riley and they’re both great and awesome guys but it just frustrated me as a competitor. I grew up an OU fan and that was always my goal so when I didn’t get that, it was frustrating.

“But the truth is that I couldn’t be happier where I ended up — I love it here. I have all the respect in the world for OU and its coaching staff but I love it here. For me, personally, that was a big win. Could’ve done it last year but this was a great win.”

While he didn’t get an offer from Oklahoma, down the road in Stillwater, Okla., Mike Gundy and Oklahoma State did offer Kolar a scholarship — after Kolar was already committed to Iowa State.

“That’s a hard decision when a school in your home state comes in on you in the recruiting process,” Coach Matt Campbell said. “It says a lot about who Charlie is. At that time, he had a brother that was at Oklahoma State as well. There was personal meaning toward getting that scholarship offer.

“It takes a lot of courage to not stay home and stay committed to us. I really appreciate his courage and we’re really grateful that he did make that decision because he’s certainly been a big pillar of us continuing to grow as a program. We really appreciate who he is, both on and off the field.”

Isheem Young update

Freshman safety Isheem Young has been playing well for Iowa State, recording 17 tackles and an interception.

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But in the second half against Texas Tech, Young was called for targeting, and was ejected from the game. Because the play happened in the second half, Young will have to sit out the first half of Saturday’s game against Oklahoma State.

Campbell said Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby and his staff reviewed the play after the game and upheld the ruling of Young missing the first half against the Cowboys.

“Those are things we have to continue to coach through and work through,” Campbell said. “Isheem is a very good player, but we’ve had a lot of guys play at that middle safety spot. We’ll be excited once he’s able to come back in the game but Arnold Azuna has done a phenomenal job and Greg Eisworth has done a phenomenal job. We’re fortunate that we have a lot of guys who can play and we’ll pick up the pieces and continue to move forward and look forward to regaining Isheem in the second half.”

COVID-19 and injury report

Iowa State continues to do a remarkable job avoiding COVID-19 and mitigating the spread if someone does come in contact.

The athletics department as a whole had just one athlete test positive out of 567 that were tested in the most recent round of testing.

No indication was made which sport that athlete participates in.

As for injuries, Campbell didn’t have any changes to his updates.

Offensive lineman Trevor Downing continues be out for an extended period of time but Iowa State hopes to get him back by the end of the season. Receiver Tarique Milton still is week-to-week.

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