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Nov 5, 2019

A six-foot-tall wide receiver is essentially an underdog by definition. But this week’s Moonlighter made his name by being willing to do whatever it took to get his on the field. Catching passes, running reverses, special teams, even throwing the ball, Josh Lenz was willing to do it all. Lenz was a Dubuque Hempstead standout who was a fan favorite for the Iowa State Cyclones and ended his pro career one play away from playing on Sundays.

Lenz was a three-sport standout for the Mustangs. In addition to being a star running back and safety, Lenz burned it up on the track and the hardwood. In spite of growing up a Hawkeye fan, Gene Chizik and the Cyclones were his only D-I football option. Paul Rhoads took over the program before Lenz set foot on campus. In his 4 years, Lenz did his part to convert some Eastern Iowans to Cyclone fans.

Though Lenz ended his career as a Cyclone at 24-27, his 4-year run included some of the biggest wins in Cyclone history. The first of which was a 9-6 win over Nebraska in Lincoln in 2009. That 2009 season was capped with a win in the Insight Bowl over Minnesota. 2010 had the road win over #22 Texas Longhorns and 2011 had the road win over #19 Texas Tech. The biggest win in Lenz’s career, and perhaps Cyclone football history, was the November 2011 overtime victory in Ames over #2 Oklahoma State. Lenz was a critical part of the highs of the Rhoads years in Ames and gave Cyclones a lot of great memories.

After a successful college career, including a perfect passer rating (going 2-2 with 2 touchdowns) Lenz put his name on some NFL boards with his performance at the ISU pro-day. After going undrafted in the 2012 draft, Lenz was picked up by the Chicago Bears. His pro career included stops with the Seahawks, Browns, Colts, and Texans. His time as Colt included being put on the active roster for the 2014 playoff game against the New England Patriots. His opportunities in the NFL were limited by injuries and AC joint problems ended his career when he was with the Houston Texans.