Iowa Hawkeyes offensive lineman Connor Colby flexing his versatility

·3 min read

Iowa offensive lineman Connor Colby has been showcasing his versatility, working at both offensive guard and tackle during the Hawkeyes’ 2022 training camp.

It’s already been important and figures to remain that way, too. Unfortunately, the Hawkeyes lost guard Justin Britt for the season, and while these aren’t season-ending injuries and don’t seem particularly serious listening to the Iowa coaching staff, both Mason Richman and Nick DeJong sat out during the Hawkeyes’ open scrimmage at the Kids’ Day at Kinnick.

After a season in which Colby started each of Iowa’s final 11 games at right guard, the ideal destination is probably to keep the 6-foot-6, 308 pound offensive lineman right there on the inside. Still, his versatility is something the Hawkeye coaching staff has to love.

Listening to Colby at Iowa Media Day, he’s fine so long as he’s got a spot on the field.

“I mean it’s been fun, anything I can do to be out there and play football. It’s a change up every now and then, keeps me on my toes,” Colby said.

Ultimately, Colby is keeping any inherent differences between guard and tackle pretty simplistic.

“You have to be ready no matter what, because no matter what there’s going to be a good guy across from you and you have to be ready to handle them,” Colby said.

In terms of bright futures in Iowa City, Colby’s would have to be right toward the top of the list. As a true freshman, Colby garnered All-America status from the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) and the Maxwell Football Club.

Thanks to his standout true frosh campaign, Colby has been picking up recognition before this 2022 season boots off. Phil Steele named Colby a preseason second-team All-Big Ten selection, while Athlon Sports handed out preseason third-team All-Big Ten status to the sophomore.

With plenty expected of Colby, he’s just happy to be fully settled into what Iowa offensive line coach George Barnett and the Hawkeyes are asking of him.

“This year I have a better understanding of what’s going. I need to keep improving my fundamentals in order to make a big difference from this year to last year,” Colby said.

The Hawkeyes head into 2022 as one of the favorites in the Big Ten West. As the defending West division champion, there’s a laundry list of games that could fit the billing as one of the Hawkeyes’ most important.

Colby isn’t ready to iron down which one he’s looking forward to the most.

“I am excited for all of them, but I think the first time back in Kinnick Stadium will be fun. Coming out of the tunnel again, experiencing the atmosphere of all the fans. And they are all sold out this year, which is a testament to our loyal fan support,” Colby said.

As Iowa looks to get more out of its offense in 2022, one of the reasons for optimism is the man from Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Colby epitomizes a lot of the Hawkeyes’ hopes along their offensive line.

Similar to several of his teammates, the hope is his inexperience from last season morphs into seasoned play in 2022.

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Story originally appeared on Hawkeyes Wire