"It's disappointing anytime one of our players doesn't complete his career with our team and go on to earn their degree from Iowa," said Ferentz. "That being said, we wish both James and Arvell success in the future."
Cleveland, a wide receiver from Baytown, TX, played as a redshirt freshman last season. He started 11 of 12 games and was Iowa's second leading receiver with 36 catches for 464 yards.
Nelson, a reserve quarterback from Cleveland, OH, saw limited action in only three games last year.