Welcome to the start of our preview of the Iowa Hawkeyes’ 2022 football season as we take a look at each individual player on the roster and count down the days until kickoff at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, September 3rd. Here’s a preview of every player, as well as the full current lineup in the Countdown Story Stream.
First on the countdown is #99, defensive tackle Noah Shannon.
Noah Shannon – RS Senior
Montgomery, IL (Oswego)
Prognosis 2022: Start defensive tackle
Noah Shannon heads into the 2022 season following a path similar to so many who have come before him in Phil Parker’s defense. The 2018 prospect was rated a 3-star defensive tackle by Rivals and 247 Sports and received several solid but few excellent offers in preparation. After briefly becoming a victim of the PJ Fleck Experience, Shannon came to his senses and ended up in Iowa City, home of his first bid.
In preparation, Shannon showed much of what the Hawkeyes are looking for in their center stoppers. He’s strong with a good burst and showed the ability to get into the backfield and wreak havoc. What it lacked for these high-end offerings, however, was length. At just 6ft, Shannon is too short to really be a high-end defensive tackle in a P5 program.
That’s where Iowa makes its living.
The Hawkeyes spent the early seasons on campus with Shannon, working to get his physique fit for Big Ten. Since the big guy wasn’t going to get taller, they worked to get his weight down to size, reducing it from 300 pounds in preparation to 294 and eventually down to the 289 pounds he played at as a redshirt junior in 2021.
Shannon earned time in 7 games as a redshirt freshman with a forced and recovered fumble in Iowa’s win over Rutgers. The following season, he played in 8 games and earned a start against Nebraska. He finished the year with 11 tackles and a half sack.
But it was the 2021 season where Shannon really came into his own. After three years of waiting, learning, and working at its craft, the Oswego product earned a starting role at DT for all 14 of Iowa’s games. He finished with 47 tackles, including 21 solos, 2 tackles for loss and a pair of sacks.
The effort earned Shannon an All-Big Ten Honorable Mention from both the coaches and the media. Now the senior appears to be the next in a long line of Hawkeye defenders to progress through their careers and go out in All-Big Ten fashion.
Shannon is set to be a starter again all season barring injuries in a defense once again asked to shoulder the load. He was listed as such alongside Logan Lee on the spring depth chart and is expected to be a key cog in the middle spinning with backups Yahya Black and Lukas Van Ness. Shannon seems to be a fixture on non-passing downs.
Can he prove versatile enough to build on the pair of sacks he had in 2022? That might be difficult considering Iowa tends to push defensive ends in on obvious losses, but given the Hawkeyes’ track record of seniors putting in their peak performance in their final season, it’s certainly within reason.