With spring ball in the books, Iowa has released its preliminary two-deeps for 2011.
Because of injuries and true freshman who aren't on campus yet, this depth chart definitely isn't set in stone. In fact, coach Kirk Ferentz said that there could be a number of changes by the start of the season. Also, these two-deeps were released the Thursday before the spring game.
However, this is a rough guide to how the Hawkeyes could look come the fall.
Check out Bleacher Report's analysis of Iowa's spring two-deeps.
First String: James Vandenberg
Second String: John Wienke or AJ Derby
This confirms what everyone knew heading into spring, that James Vandenberg will be Iowa's starting quarterback next season. Vandenberg was Ricky Stanzi's backup for the past two seasons and started games at Ohio State and at home against Minnesota in 2009 when Stanzi was injured.
Perhaps the bigger storyline is that redshirt freshman AJ Derby has moved even with junior John Wienke on the depth chart.
Derby was highly recruited out of high school and is very athletic, causing many experts to question whether he would be more effective at another position. However, Iowa's coaches have said all along that they intend to keep him at quarterback, and it looks like he has a chance to have a great future there after Vandenberg graduates.
First String: Marcus Coker
Second String: James White
The running back depth chart should shuffle around a lot before the season starts this fall, as the Hawkeyes have a number of strong running backs coming onto campus.
Coker will undoubtedly be the starter after an incredible 219-yard performance in the Insight Bowl, but a number of young running backs could see the field, namely Rodney Coe, Mika'il McCall and Jordan Canzeri.
Ferentz has said that one of two true freshmen could see playing time and expect someone from that group to emerge as a possible backup or one-two counterpart with Coker.
First String: Keenan Davis, Steven Staggs
Second String: Kevonte Martin-Manley, Don Shumpert
The glaring omission from this list is star wide receiver Marvin McNutt, who missed this spring due to a shoulder injury. McNutt will clearly be Iowa's No. 1 wide receiver and will be joined as a starter by Davis.
Ferentz and McNutt were both happy with Davis's improvement during spring practice and both believe he can live up to the potential he showed coming out of high school.
Staggs has emerged as an unlikely "next man in" this spring and will likely be the top backup. Martin-Manley is a freshman, and Ferentz says he still has a lot of work to do.
First String: Brad Herman
Second String: CJ Fiedorowicz
With the graduation of Allen Reisner, Herman steps into the starting role at tight end after playing as the backup last season.
Iowa has a history of producing NFL-caliber tight ends and Herman hopes to continue that tradition.
Fiedorowicz was highly recruited out of high school and has the size to be a very good Big Ten tight end. Expect him to see time this year in two-tight end sets and gain experience to eventually take over the starting role.
First String: OG- Adam Gettis, Brandon Scherff; OT- Reilly Reiff, Markus Zusevics; C- James Ferentz
Second String: OG- Woody Orne, Drew Clark; OT- Matt Tobin, Brett Van Sloten, C- Connor Bofelli
The offensive line should be a strength for Iowa this season, as it is a veteran group that was greatly improved at the end of last season.
Reiff will be an all-conference candidate and the line should help to pave the way for Coker and Iowa's young group of running backs. It will also need to be solid against the pass rush to protect a new starting quarterback.
Ferentz could possibly use a rotation as well, especially early in the season.
First String: DT- Mike Daniels, Carl Davis; DE- Broderick Binns, Lebron Daniel
Second String: DT- Mike Hardy, Cole Heissel; DE- Dominic Alvis, Joe Forgy
With the graduation of Adrian Clayborn, Karl Klug and Christian Ballard, the Iowa defensive line will be very inexperienced next season, as only Binns and Daniels have significant game experience.
However, this is a veteran group that has spent a lot of time on the team.
Ferentz said that he could use a six- to eight-man rotation early in the season and expect there to be a number of moving pieces early on.
First String: Tyler Nielsen, James Morris, Christian Kirksey
Second String: Dakota Getz, Terrance Pryor, Anthony Hitchens
After enduring a number of injuries last season, the Iowa linebacking corps employed a young group for the latter half of the year.
However, that young group played well, especially James Morris, who could be an all-conference selection in just his second year in school. Redshirt freshman Shane DiBona also played well but was out this spring due to injury. Expect him to start along with Morris and Nielsen.
Injuries have typically been a problem for the Hawkeyes at linebacker, so the backups may be called into action again in 2011. They are very inexperienced, but if they can follow the footsteps of Morris and DiBona, Iowa should be just fine at linebacker next season.
First String: CB- Shaun Prater, Greg Castillo; S- Micah Hyde, Collin Sleeper
Second String: CB- Jordan Bernstine, BJ Lowery; S- Jack Swanson, Tom Donatell
The Iowa secondary has gone through a major shake-up this offseason but should still be one of Iowa's strongest units in 2011.
The Hawkeyes lost star safeties Brett Greenwood and Tyler Sash from last season and to help fill that void, moved starting corner Micah Hyde to free safety.
Hyde said the transition is going well and it should help balance out the Iowa secondary. There is a surplus of talent at corner, including Prater, who is a GoDaddy.com preseason All-American.
While there are still moving pieces—Hyde to safety is no guarantee—expect the secondary to be a strength for the Hawkeyes this season.