Spring (TX) dual-threat quarterback Darius Lee-Campbell, the No. 36 quarterback in the 2014 class, committed to Iowa State on Saturday after a long courtship. Lee-Campbell was slated to take a visit to Yale recently but that was cancelled at the last minute, as was a planned official to Wake Forest this weekend, off because of head coach Jim Grobe's resignation.
Lee-Campbell becomes commit No. 18 for the 2014 class.
AllCyclones.com talked to Lee-Campbell early Sunday for a Q&A.
AllCyclones: What sense of relief are you feeling today after finally making this all official?
Lee-Campbell:"I've pretty much been sold on Iowa State since I went to campus but I wanted to make sure with the reset of my family. When I went to Iowa State I went with my Mom and she fell in love, too, so I just needed to get my Dad on board. When Coach K came Wednesday and talked to him, he got him on board, so yesterday I talked to Coach Rhoads and told him I was in."
Q:Your family wanted you to take other visits just to be sure. I know Yale fell through and you were going to go to Wake Forest this week but they had the staff changes. How frustrating was that for those things to not happen?
A:"It was real frustrating with Wake Forest because I had the tickets and everything and everything was set up. When that fell through I thought, 'Maybe this is a sign.' When Coach K came and talked to my Dad I was like, 'Yeah, this is a done deal.'"
Q:Even with those falling through, did part of you want to wait it out? Maybe take some officials in January?
A:"After I left Iowa State I wanted to commit. But I knew it was a family decision, so I had to get my Dad on board. And when he talked to Coach K he was like, 'Yeah, I can see you going there.' So at that point there was no point in going on any other officials."
Q:What can you do in the pistol offense?
A:"Basically they need a QB back there who can run the ball 15-20 times a game and still be able to sling it around. We're gonna have some good receivers. It's an offense that should be scoring around 40 points a game. They lacked that this year, tremendously. So I'm excited to get there and see what I can do, be a threat at quarterback. It's not a complicated offense. It's just basically you make pre-snap reads and once you snap the ball you make those reads. If you're running the offense right, by the time the fourth quarter comes around, the defense isn't going to want to be on the field."
Q:The thing up here, after the last season where Sam Richardson got dinged up so much, the fans are wary of the read-option offense. As a quarterback, how can you be mature enough to run the ball 15-20 times a game but not take too many bad hits? How do you smartly run that offense?
A:"Basically you're gonna get hit, regardless. But it's just how you're going to get hit. Going into contact, you never want to get hit heads-up with a linebacker who's 250 pounds. If you can, get out of bounds. A lot of times when you're running the read-option and the end crashes, you're already running toward the sideline."
Know what you can get. If it's five yards, get those five yards and get to a safe place. It's not like you're a running back who can go out there, tweak an ankle, get a breather on the sideline and get back out there. You get what you can, and you get down."
Q:How can you carry over your success in high school to the next level?
A:"Basically I'm real big on film. Every week I get in there by myself and watch the defense and pick out their weak links. You go through it with the mindset to find their tendencies — are they going to play Cover 4, stuff like that. They might change some things up week-to-week but they're basically going to stick to their bread-and-butter stuff. Once I sit there and study that stuff I can go out there confidently and know exactly what they're doing on defense.
"That's the big thing, putting in the hours in the film room.
Q:Klenakis has those pistol tutorial DVDs on Amazon. You going to watch those?
A:"Yeah, he's gonna send those to me after Feb. 5 (National Signing Day).
Q:And you talk to Allen Lazard and some of the other commits?
A:"I've been talking to Allen for about a month now, just texting back and forth. Pretty close to the rest of the team. And Cole Anderson, the offensive lineman. And then Colin [Downing], I get texts from him.
"It's gonna be fun."