Big 12 Sports Interviews

Joel Lanning talks NFL Draft Preparations, the 2017 Season & More

NCAA Football: Baylor at Iowa State

It was fantastic to catch up with Iowa State Cyclones linebacker Joel Lanning and look back on an outstanding career in Ames and discuss his preparations for the upcoming NFL Draft. Lanning addresses his move from quarterback to linebacker last offseason, the excitement of the 2017 season and what else his future might have in store. Enjoy!


Lanning on what he’s heard on NFL Draft: “I haven’t heard much on possibly getting drafted. Teams are more interested in private workouts… nothing really crazy in terms of being drafted, but there’s definitely talk about being pulled into a camp or team for sure.” 

On his expectations for 2017-18: “I went way past [my expectations]. To see what I did was kind of crazy and pick up that fast and have success, I can’t thank my coaches and teammates enough to get me to where I am today… I really didn’t know what I was capable of doing and I just had a great year.” 

Lanning on possibly transferring: “I never thought about transferring. I would rather be done. I graduated last spring, I was going to be done with everything if I wanted to be, get a degree and all that. I sat down with coach Campbell and told him where I was at. I didn’t want to come back for my senior year to stand on the sidelines and possibly play five snaps a game. I wanted significant time playing, and the opportunity arose, and they let me try it out and I never looked back.” 

“After the Oklahoma game is when things really blew up for me. I had some people messaging me on social media about agencies and that’s when I realized I had a chance at this and keep playing ball.” 

Which game, OU or TCU, did he enjoy more?: “The Oklahoma win was a great win and all that because it was down there and they were a top 5 team. But the win against TCU was another good one because it was at home and the crowd stormed the field and it was awesome to experience that at least one time with all the craziness that happens there, so I would have to say the TCU game.” 

Did you see this kind of success coming for Kyle Kempt: “Not really. Honestly, it was one of those things we had all of our money put on Jacob Park to come through, and he had some things going on with his wife so he had to fix that an take a leave of absence. Coach Campbell trusted Kyle and he stepped up and did his thing. You never would’ve thought that, but at the same time you would because Kyle just came there and worked every single day and didn’t complain about things. He just wanted a chance at starting and all that and finally his opportunity arose and he just made the best of it every single time.” 

On how Matt Campbell changed the program: “He got everyone to buy in and instilled the culture the wanted here right away with the strength staff and everyone like that… everywhere in Ames with football is on the same page and that’s what you need there. Everyone’s buying into him… everyone’s literally just listening to him and he leads the way and doing a lot of good things in recruiting as well so they’re on the right track.”

On Matt Campbell rumors: There were definitely a lot of the younger guys that were nervous about Coach Campbell leaving… but at the same time he said he wasn’t going anywhere and you gotta trust him. I trust him with everything. But yea, I think there were a lot of guys that were scared but obviously he likes it here a lot and you saw that with the contract that he signed.” 

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