TEMPE, AZ - DECEMBER 30: The Iowa Hawkeyes huddle up around quarterback James Vandenberg #16 during the Insight Bowl against the Oklahoma Sooners at Sun Devil Stadium on December 30, 2011 in Tempe, Arizona. The Sooners defeated the Hawkeyes 31-14. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
The book is closed on the 2011 football season. It's time to move hoops to the top of the jump. Before we do, there's plenty to look forward to 2012. I've been "live bloggin" for a couple years now; I think I have the schedule down. It goes like this; signing day and the NFL combine in February, Spring practice in March, Spring game and NFL draft in April. Nothing except recruiting nuggets and NFL camp notes in May-late July. Then the preseason becomes the 2011 season and the cycle begins again.
Some have already began to look ahead to Iowa Football 2012. Rob Howe, of Hawkeye Insider, provides his glimpse. Marc Morehouse, of the Cedar Rapids Gazette, does too. It's somewhat theraputic to look ahead, especially after being outclassed those last two games. But still, a lot can change, for the better, hopefully better and of course, for worse.
It sounds like Marcus Coker intends to be back for next year. Ferentz also said he believes McCall will be back too. The semester begins in two weeks, I'd think if they both are enrolled for Spring semester that's good for Iowa.
The Hawks went to the JUCO ranks to recruit a replacement for AJ Derby's quarterback spot on the roster. Iowa born Cody Sokol will be on campus for Spring ball and maybe will challenge Vandenberg for the quarterback spot.
The rest of this month is all about recruiting for Ferentz and company. How many more recruits Iowa will get verbals from remains to be seen. Ferentz has said "20," I hope for closer to 25. There's also the defensive coaching positions that need filling.
The defensive coordinator vacancy has been posted online by UofI. The close date is January 11th, so we may find out more next week. Ferentz isn't in a hurry and says, "If it costs us a recruit or two, we will make up for that next year."
On to basketball. The men's team may have given us fans some hope for the season. After a slow start it appears the Hawks are turning a corner, and at the right time. The players look like they have great chemistry and look like they have fun on the court. They may still not make a post season run but a team with good chemistry can be dangerous down the stretch of a season.
Iowa hadn't beaten a ranked team on the road since 2006 before defeating Wisconsin. They also were just the second unranked team to beat the Badgers at the Kohl Center while Bo Ryan has been coach. The Hawkeyes entered Saturday's game as 16 point underdogs.
Iowa currently sits at (9-6) on the season and (1-1) in Big Ten play. The Hawkeyes next face the Minnesota Golden Gophers (12-3, 0-2 in the Big Ten) tomorrow night in Minneapolis. After defeating kenpom.com's #1 team Wisconsin, Iowa has moved to #100 in the rankings. Minnesota, despite losing two in a row, sits at #46.
Other links of interest:
- Will Iowa get a couple of football commits today?
- Time to move beyond ho-hum football seasons?
- A look inside Fran McCaffery's office
- Devyn Marble's big shot
- You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose too
- Kaczenski says Huskers impossible to turn down
- Adrian Clayborn, monster rookie year
- Mike Gesell sparkles in Arizona
- Cartwright is healthy again
- Possibly the worst thing from yesterday's football coverage
- Big Ten men's hoops TV schedule (Jan. 2-Jan. 8)
- Cody Sokol, inside the numbers