SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said when the Hawkeyes arrived that personnel and hiring decisions would remain on the back burner until after the Insight Bowl.
Seven days later, that hasn’t changed.
On suspended running back Mika’il McCall, who wrote on his Facebook this week that he was leaving Iowa, “No. I got nothing right now. We will address that when we get back.”
Friday’s Insight Bowl against Oklahoma will be retiring defensive coordinator Norm Parker’s last game. Also, defensive line coach Rick Kaczenski accepted a similar position at Nebraska just before the Hawkeyes left for Arizona.
No movement on that front. The only timetable Ferentz gave was after the bowl.
“We’ve been worried about the game,” Ferentz said. “In a perfect world, we’ve also been worried about recruiting, which unfortunately is part of what we have to do year‑round now. And when we get through Saturday or Friday, then we’ll shift our attention and we will be juggling two things there.”
Ferentz was asked if he thought it affected Iowa’s recruiting. It should be noted Iowa did pick up defensive backs both after Parker’s retirement announcement (Anthony Morgan) and just before (Kevin Buford).
“If it does, it does,” Ferentz said. “I can’t be worried about that. And I think the important thing is that we do things the right way. It is no different than in ’99.
“To me, the paramount challenge was to get the right people in the right positions and that’s really‑‑ when I turn my attention to that, that will be the number one thought. If we lose Joey Smith to state U or wherever, that’s the way it goes.
“These are big things. When you hire assistant coaches, I think it is as big of a thing you do as head coach. I think it’s more important to get the right person if it costs us a recruit or two recruits, we will make up for that next year. Having the right people in place, replacing Norm Parker is not‑‑ you don’t just jump at that. I’m going to make sure‑‑ try to make sure we have the right people in place.”
– Ferentz was asked about coaching his sons (Brian and James). His youngest, Steven, will graduate from Iowa City High this spring. He could potentially walk on at Iowa.
“If it’s the best thing for him, then I think it would be great,” Kirk Ferentz said. “It’s like all of our kids, we’ve tried to make sure they’ve explored all options possible and really they’ve got to do what they think is best for them.
“So, if it turns out that way, that would be great. I’m not trying to steer it, encourage it, discourage it, whatever. The one thing we have encouraged with all of our kids is to look around and seek places. If they end up here, that’s great. We want to make sure they know there are other options available, too. They’ve got to go where their heart is.”
– In that vein, Ferentz was asked if he’d consider adding Brian, who’s now tight ends coach for the New England Patriots, to his staff. He said he “would consider anybody.”
“He knows more football than I know, I know that,” Kirk said of Brian, who played center for the Hawkeyes. “He’s pretty good. He’s in a pretty good place right now, too. So, I don’t know if he is available right now, but I’m not saying we are going that narrow.”
You’ve probably figured out that I haven’t been doing the video, for the most part, this week. You know, with the video being all professional and HD and everything.
Gazette photographer Brian Ray has been working his tail off. I think it looks great and would like to thank him.
The Barta video he shot didn’t have sound, for whatever reason. So, he borrowed my recorder, synced it and made it presentable (even showed up on KCRG).
Brian has been above and beyond this week. Pleasure to work with such a professional.
Iowa athletics director Gary Barta
OT Riley Reiff
RB Jason White
LB James Morris
TE C.J. Fiedorowicz
QB James Vandenberg
K Mike Meyer
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