Cyclone Sports Report: What has been the biggest adjustment from high school football for you so far in camp?
A.J. Klein: I would say the speed of the game and the size of the linemen. I'm used to going against 250-pound linemen and now I'm going against some guys that are 330 pounds and some are also very tall. The athletic ability of the players in college is just a lot better.
CSR: What does it mean to hear positive comments coming from Coach Rhoads about your play so far during camp?
AK: It really means a lot and it shows that he sees that I'm trying hard and giving my all. This adjustment is tough physically and mentally and with him recognizing my play it just motivates me to work even harder. I just want to continue to show what I can do and help the team in any way that I can.
CSR: How have the older linebackers helped you so far?
AK: Freddie (Garrin) and the other guys know the system and have given me a lot of pointers on the physicality of the game and how to adjust to the linemen and how to do a better job of getting off the block. A big part of this game is mentally and so I'm also getting reps in mentally when I'm on the sideline. They have helped me whenever I have had questions on the sidelines.
CSR: What does the defense have to improve on the most before you guys take the field against North Dakota State?
AK: Just knowing our assignments and getting better every day. The key is cutting down down the mental errors and if we do so it should really pay off in the games.
CSR: How are you adjusting to life at Iowa State?
AK: I love it so far just having your own freedom as a college student. Being here this summer was great because myself and all the other freshmen really became a close-knit group of guys.