We begin our look at Iowa positions today with a story on Iowa linebacker Pat Angerer. This will be eight days of features on Iowa players accompanied with a detailed look at the position they play -- who's in, who's depth and what will it take for that position to contribute to a big bowl-type season.
Here's the schedule (this is subject to change)
Sunday – LB Pat Angerer (me)
Monday – Kicker Trent Mossbrucker (Scott)
Tuesday – DT Karl Klug (me)
Wednesday – DB Amari Spievey (Scott)
Thursday – QB Ricky Stanzi (me)
Friday – OT Bryan Bulaga (me)
Saturday – WR Trey Stross (Scott)
Sunday – RB Jeff Brinson (me)
I spent a couple hours on a Sunday in Bettendorf, Pat Angerer's hometown. Here's a sample of what will be in the newspaper and online (under the sports and Iowa Hawkeyes headings) later tonight.
BETTENDORF — A pair of black sweat socks went flying out the window at a busy intersection in Bettendorf.
This is the true story of four friends . . . who bowl together . . . and have their bowling observed by a reporter . . . to find out what happens when the bowling stops being polite . . . and starts getting real.
Three blocks from Miller Time Bowling, it’s too real for Tom Langford. His socks ended up in the ditch.
“Take one of my socks,” Pat Angerer said. “Put it on your lead foot. It’s better than nothing.”
Four high school friends proceed to bowl away a lazy summer Sunday. Why bowling?
“It keeps us out of trouble,” Angerer said.
These are four young men staring adulthood in the face. Langford, 23, is helping out coaching the Minnesota State linebackers after missing out on a bid for a sixth year of eligibility. John Davis, 22, is in the Army and working toward special forces. Greg Reckman, 22, is a criminal justice major at Iowa State.
You know Angerer, 22. He’s the Iowa Hawkeyes’ all-Big Ten middle linebacker. At Miller Time Bowling, he’s somewhat recognizable in a Bettendorf T-shirt.
In the lane to the left, a kids’ birthday party sings and bowls. To the right, some very good bowlers spin strikes. The Angerer crew makes noise. There’s the “psych outs,” some slapping and a few downright heckles.
“Greg, you’re scaring the kids,” Angerer says just above the din of the pins.
OK, here's what didn't make the paper.
These psych outs can get pretty salty. Tom is balding and John used that. Greg's gray T-shirt showed sweat spots where you wouldn't expect them. It was like he sweated everywhere but the arm pits.
John and Greg were partners. John said he needed to get Greg to the "proper level of drunkeness." It took two pitchers of beer and a triple shot of tequila that smelled like regret.
"I said, 'I want a triple shot of your worst tequila,' " John said. Remember, he asked this in a bowling alley. It smelled like regret.
Pat rolled a personal best 181 in the first game, which didn't count.
John and Greg won the first game, so Pat and Tom owed them dinner at Appleby's. Pat and Tom pulled out the second game, which meant the movie would be on John and Greg. But no, after Appleby's they went back to the bowling alley.
I learned that Pat Angerer is a pretty decent bowler, has a wonderful support system (family and friends) and is a geniunely quiet and humble guy who isn't crazy about the spotlight and just wants to do his job. His sophomore year he went to the abyss of career anonymity. He rebounded in a big way last season, but he's not about to forget the lessons he learned in 2007.