Ihmir Smith-Marsette returns to Iowa’s depth chart following suspension

The senior wide receiver missed the team’s game against Michigan State.


Katie Goodale

Iowa Wide Receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette dodges Northwestern’s Defensive Back Cameron Ruiz during the Iowa v Northwestern football game at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020. The Wildcats defeated the Hawkeyes 21-20. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

Robert Read, Pregame Editor

A star player returns to the field for the Hawkeye football team in Week 4.

Ahead of the team’s game against Minnesota on Friday, Iowa wide receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette is back on Iowa’s depth chart after serving a one-game suspension.

The senior was arrested the morning of Nov. 1 for operating while intoxicated, and did not dress for Iowa’s 49-7 victory over Michigan State.

“I would like to offer my deepest and sincerest apologies to the University of Iowa and the Hawkeye Football Team,” Smith-Marsette tweeted Monday night in his first public comment since the arrest. “On Sunday, November 1, 2020, I had a lapse of judgment, which resulted in me making a critical mistake that I wholeheartedly regret. At that moment, I not only let my team down, but I also disappointed my family, those who support me, and anyone who considers me a role model. Looking forward, I am happy to be back with my team, preparing for the Minnesota game this Friday night, and competing for the remainder of the season.”

Iowa’s depth chart, which was released Monday afternoon, lists Smith-Marsette as a starting wide receiver once again.

Smith-Marsette led Iowa in receiving yards last season with 722, and caught a career-high seven passes for 84 yards in the team’s Week 2 loss to Northwestern. The New Jersey native is the Big Ten’s all-time leader in kickoff return average.

“I’ve known Ihmir for four-plus years now,” Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz said in a video conference last week. “He’s a tremendous person and a great team member. For me personally, this [was] very uncharacteristic of him and surprising. It’s something he did and it’s a bad decision. It’s like all of us in life, you make a bad decision, you have to live with it. I think he’ll push forward, that’s my sense right now, but we’ll see how things pan out.”

Campbell returns to depth chart for first time since Week 1

 Sophomore Jack Campbell was Iowa’s starting middle linebacker on the depth chart entering the first week of the season. But just days before Iowa’s Oct. 24 opener against Purdue, Campbell was diagnosed with mononucleosis, which has forced him to miss every snap of the season.

But Campbell has reappeared on the depth chart heading into the team’s fourth game of the season. The Cedar Falls native is listed as the Hawkeyes’ backup middle linebacker behind starter Seth Benson.

Following Iowa’s victory over Michigan State on Saturday, Ferentz said that Campbell was cleared to start working with the team on Sunday.

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“But the problem is he’s got three weeks of inactivity, and it wasn’t COVID-related, so he’s got three weeks of inactivity, total inactivity, so his conditioning base is — it’s going to be a little bit of a concern,” Ferentz said. “We’ll have the defensive coaches mad … but we’ve got to be smart about how we move him forward.

“Jack is a really good football player, he was our starter coming into the season, and it’ll be good to get him back.”

Schulte remains off of two-deep depth chart

Senior defensive tackle Austin Schulte is another Hawkeye who had a starting job coming into the season but hasn’t seen the field yet.

Schulte has missed all three of Iowa’s games so far this season with an undisclosed injury, and isn’t listed on the two-deep depth chart this week, either.

“Austin is going to actually start doing some work,” Ferentz said following the Michigan State game. “I don’t know how soon we’ll get him out to the field with full contact and all that, but he’ll start being able to work [Sunday]. Maybe he can help us out this week. That would be great to get him back. He does such a great job leadership-wise.”