Why Iowa State Football Signer Hunter Deyo Chose Not To Sign Up Early

Iowa State football fans saw the Cyclones’ new look at two open workouts this spring, and Ames’ new generation of rookies were on full display.

It meant a chance to see how early registrants like Greg Gaines, Will McLaughlin, Jacob Imming and Cartevious Norton were adjusting to the Iowa State system, and if any of them had a chance to play. considerable snaps in 2022.

The group was notably missing four-star defensive lineman Hunter Deyo, highest-rated rookie to pick Cyclones over Iowa at the time of Matt Campbell. In fact, the last time football fans saw Deyo on the gridiron he was helping Lewis Central wins Class 3A State Championship.

Lewis Central four-star and senior defensive lineman Hunter Deyo, left, is the highest-rated rookie to choose Iowa State over Iowa during the Matt Campbell era.

As his future teammates got a head start on the Iowa State campus, Deyo actually suspended football. Well, sort of.

“Right after football season, I took about a week off, just to let my body recover,” Deyo told the Des Moines Register.

Don’t worry, Cyclones fans. Deyo prepares to play, even though he’s not on campus.

He may not be in Ames to practice with the Cyclones, but Iowa State sent Deyo a workout book to keep him in shape this offseason. He also had another sport – athletics – in mind before spring. This is the reason why Deyo did not register early.

“I just wanted to do track,” Deyo said. “It’s my last year, why not? I really like the track and it’s just fun. Like if you throw bad, well, you have the next day. No one really puts a lot of pressure on you. It’s just a relaxing sport.

Yes, you heard right. The 6-foot-3, 270-pound lineman finds weighted discus throwing and shot put…relaxing. It makes sense when you’re one of the top 300 football players nationally and you’re about to fill big shoes in a Division I program.

Lewis Central senior Hunter Deyo hoists the Class 4A State Football Championship trophy after the Titans beat Cedar Rapids Xavier in three overtimes.

So, of course, Deyo decided to pursue another sport instead of enrolling early. But that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been busy preparing to join his Iowa State teammates this summer. He might actually have a busier schedule than the Ames athletes.

Deyo acknowledges that the track doesn’t take up too much of his time, except when he has a competition, which takes up most of the day. But he lifts Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and if he has to race on a day that conflicts with the track, he will shift training to the weekend. Not to mention that he still follows a regular class schedule in high school.

He wouldn’t have it any other way, though. Deyo will graduate alongside his classmates. He will also be able to finish his track career in high school, hoping to place in the shot put and discus alongside other top soccer recruits at the state track meet. He’ll have tough competition with Brandon VanderSluis of LeMars, who is heading to South Dakota this summer.

“I just want to put in the shot and drive,” Deyo said. “I would say win, but there’s a guy throwing 63 (feet) in shooting. So just get second in shooting, first in discus if I can. It’s my last year, I’m ready to have fun in the state, really.

Deyo is competing in the boys' shot put at the 2021 Iowa High School Track and Field Championships. He hopes to place in the shot put and discus at his final track meet.

When asked if he regrets not signing up early, Deyo quickly replies no. He knows he’s missing early practice and doing reps with the rest of the team. But Deyo also knows that by following his conditioning and trusting who he is as a player, he will be prepared when he arrives at Ames this summer.

Weeks away from moving to Ames, Deyo is realistic about what to expect for his first season of college football.

Lewis Central senior lineman Hunter Deyo (72) lifts junior Johnny Humpal in the end zone against Indianola.

“I know I’m going to be the low man on the totem pole,” Deyo said. “Who cares what you did in high school and all that?” You still have to earn your name here. I will catch up (early registrants) and then do my part to get to where I need to be and where I should be.

And as to whether he’s ready to return to the football pitch after months focused on athletics, that’s not even a question for Deyo.

“Oh yeah. I miss it, I miss it a lot. I can’t wait to get back. Iowa State fans should be ready. Be ready for what we’re going to do this coming season. It’s going to be a show.

Alyssa Hertel is a college sports recruiting reporter for the Des Moines Register. Contact Alyssa at [email protected] or on Twitter @AlyssaHertel.

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