Brown: It's A Repeat of 2015 for Iowa Football

AFAcademyHawk

Well-Known Member
The team actually reminds me more of 2017 in terms of its makeup: Young on both lines except for OC, dynamic RB, solid at LB. The difference is this team has far higher quality depth (thanks to the uptick in recruiting) and a more complete set of DBs; teams picked on whoever was opposite Jackson in 2017. Also, much better special teams (in particular, punting) and a more experienced QB.
 

MelroseHawkins

Well-Known Member
Another great write-up by Rick Brown. The guy has skill, that's for sure.

I really like this quote in his article by Kurt Herbstreit

“Iowa is the MMA fighter,” Herbstreit said this week. “Iowa’s the guy that goes in the second round and both sides are bleeding, and then they get you in that inevitable chokehold and you’re like, “Oh my God. Trying to hold on. No, I can’t.’ Tap out. That’s Iowa. That’s the style of football. They don’t care. And you might look at them if you’re an SEC fan, or Big 12, whatever, around the country and be like, “Iowa? Oh man, they’re overrated. Until you get in the ring with them, you want no part of ‘em.”
 

AreWeThereYet

Well-Known Member
The team actually reminds me more of 2017 in terms of its makeup: Young on both lines except for OC, dynamic RB, solid at LB. The difference is this team has far higher quality depth (thanks to the uptick in recruiting) and a more complete set of DBs; teams picked on whoever was opposite Jackson in 2017. Also, much better special teams (in particular, punting) and a more experienced QB.

Better punter and experienced QB make a lot of difference.
 

AFAcademyHawk

Well-Known Member
Better punter and experienced QB make a lot of difference.
That team had some fun pieces - breakout seasons for Fant and TJH, Josh Jackson, Amani Hooker, Josey Jewell. They beat Josh Allen, won a shootout against a decent ISU squad, and obviously had the big win vs OSU. But Stanley was just horrific against MSU, NW, and especially Wisconsin. Wadley wasn't a great pass blocker either.
 

Luftgekuehlt67

Well-Known Member
Great article, Brown does good work.

Guys, I love the Hawks. I grew up with the Hawks, it's in my blood. I watch every minute of every football and basketball game. The football games I can't even sit down - I pace around the living room out of nervous energy!

I'm also so proud of how Ferentz and McCaffery run their programs. Like everyone else, I'd love to pull in top 10 recruiting classes every year, but the whole "3 star" program identity is also a lot of the fun for me.

Having established my Hawk fan bona fides, imma say it: that 2015 season, in the big picture of college football, was a bit of a farce.

Don't get me wrong, I loved every minute of it and proudly carried a "if you think we suck, then come try us" attitude. It was great recruiting publicity, too.

But that schedule was just no good. Again, don't get me wrong, you can't (entirely) pick your schedule and, if you go a perfect 12-0 in the game of football, you're doing something right. That takes some doing...but strength of schedule is a thing. I'm sorry, but it is.

The closest thing we had to a quality win that year was @ a good-but-not-great Wisconsin. Great game, great memories, but that was 1 game out of 12. The remaining 11 games came against teams that, ironically, look a lot like our 2nd half schedule this year. Somewhere between "eh" and "meh", as I like to say.

The first time we faced a very good foe that year was MSU in the Big Ten Championship. We gave them one hell of a fight, but it felt a lot like an underdog situation to me. We swung like mad, but MSU was too much for us and ground us into submission in the closing minutes.

MSU went on to get absolutely humiliated by Bama and we took an absolute ass whooping from Stanford. Bama was a great team that year. I would call Stanford more like a "very good plus". However you want to label them, we were nowhere near their level.

My (trying to be) objective assessment of the 2015 Hawks? Maybe around #20 nationally. Again, I gladly took the publicity and would have happily taken the CFP berth had we pulled it out against MSU...from a pure W/L standpoint I suppose we earned it. But were we truly at that CFP level? Pfft, not even close.

Per Massey, 2015 was only the 31st best season (out of 123) in Iowa history. That's pure numbers driven. Just to put a point on it, here are the KF seasons alone that rank higher than 2015:

2009
2020
2004
2002
2003
2021 (provisional)

This year feels a bit different. I suspect this number may go down a bit over the next 6 games but, as of today, Massey has us having played the 7th toughest schedule in the country. Obviously that PSU W is huge for that, but ISU really helps us out, too. I know this goes against every fiber of HN's being, but we *really* want ISU to be good this year. As it stands right now, they are a quality win for us. If you're like me and are entertaining a CFP berth as a not unrealistic possibility, you should be rooting for the Clones to win out. If we drop one of the next 6, you can start hoping the Clones lose every game again but, until then, consider yourself an honorary CyFan (sorry).
 
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