IOWA CITY -- A handful of reactions and notes after attending Iowa football's media day on Friday:
1. The FieldTurf at Kinnick Stadium looks terrific.
2. "we're probably carrying the least amount of quarterbacks as anybody in the nation, I probably would imagine, if you exclude NFL teams.," said Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz. Iowa has four quarterbacks by my count, three who are on scholarship, and just one who has played in a college game.
Better stay healthy, Ricky Stanzi.
3. Next year, Julian Vandervelde could block for quarterback James Vandenberg. I promise you right now I'll get those two mixed up. In fact, I'm worried I just did.
4. Ferentz said his three areas of concern would be the "running back equation, the offensive line equation. ... Certainly the defensive tackles." Then he was asked about his receivers, and included that as a question-mark department, too.
He's a coach. That's what they do.
5. The Gazette outdueled the North Liberty Leader, with five reporters/photojournalists at media day to the Leader's three. And we whipped the Humboldt Independent, 5-2.
6. The water tower is still a dirty white. Why do I think some booster with more money than sense will fork over the cash to paint it black and gold with a Tiger Hawk logo?
7. More Ferentz: "It's really conceivable we have a better team than last year and have a record that doesn't indicate that, 'cause winning on the road is tougher, there's no question about that. I think the statistics prove that out.
"Yet teams have done a good job on the road in the past. There's documented evidence of that. You just look at the NFL the last couple years. Pittsburgh did a pretty fair job on the road. Nobody had a better run (on the road) than the New York Giants, going to the Super Bowl."
More and more, I think Iowa's season will be defined Oct. 17 and 24, when they play road games against Wisconsin and Michigan State.
8. Nearly every reporter who asked Ferentz a question during his press conference Friday addressed him as "Coach." I don't know why I notice that and dislike it, but I do. Don't dismiss the old-crank factor.
Coaches aren't elected officials or doctors or professors. When did "Coach" become a title in society we give to people who aren't and never were our own coaches?Johnny Orr, the former Iowa State basketball coach, has always called everyone else "Coach." That, I like.