You would think that Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey has one of the most recognizable names and games in college football. The sophomore was named AP Player of the Year, broke Barry Sanders' single-season record for all-purpose yards and finished second in the Heisman Trophy race.
However, it seems as though some Iowa players, Stanford's opponent in the Rose Bowl, were not really aware of McCaffrey or his abilities.
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“I hadn’t heard too much about [McCaffrey],” said Iowa senior linebacker Cole Fisher, via the Stanford Daily. “I didn’t follow him in the Heisman race too much, and that was probably the first time I heard about him.”
Fisher mentioned start times as a reason for not being aware of McCaffrey.
“I never really watched a lot of Pac-12 games because they just start so late back home,” Fisher said. “I think they’re after midnight for us. It’s just a geographical thing in my mind.”
Other Iowa players backed up Fisher's claim and say they didn't know who McCaffrey was until the Heisman hype really began late in the season.
“I don’t know if he had a lot of recognition until the Heisman stuff came about,” said Iowa linebacker Josey Jewell. “But he’s a great player. We’ve seen him on film and we’ve just got to be ready for him.”
Regardless of whether or not Iowa has seen a lot of McCaffrey, they're sure to get a full dose of the sophomore sensation on Jan. 1 in the Rose Bowl.