In the second high-profile leak from a Big Ten football program this week, a secret tape has emerged featuring Iowa head football coach Kirk Ferentz. In the tape, which was delivered to BHGP in an unmarked brown envelope earlier today, Ferentz can be heard to discuss the team's week one loss to Northern Illinois with an unidentified interlocutor.
"You know what? It wasn't execution. Not this week," says a voice on the recording, a voice which our experts confirms matches Ferentz's. "Sometimes execution matters, but usually football games are determined by the talent on the field. Fudge execution." After several audible gasps are heard in the background, Ferentz continues: "I said it. You heard me. Fudge it. And I'll tell you something else - the stretch play is B-O-R-I-N-G. Just because we do it well doesn't mean I like it. My real favorite play is the inverted veer, to be honest."
After a question about a critical question that a reporter asked after the game, Ferentz again surprised his audience. "You know what? I kind of gave a non-responsive answer at the time, but that was a darn good question. Insightful. Made me reconsider my whole outlook on things. I don't say this very often, but I really think the press is this country's greatest resource. It keeps the powerful in check and gives voice to the powerless. Those Founders really knew what they were doing with the First Amendment. Really great stuff."
At this point, a voice in the background asks if Ferentz is aware that many fans had been critical of him and his staff on internet message boards and Twitter after the game. "Am I aware? Am I aware? I'm "FryGuy55" [a notorious user on several online boards]. I've been all over that scene since my BBS days in the late ‘80s. I was the first assistant coach with a 14.4K baud modem. And you know what? I owe my career to the internet. That's where I get my ideas. I bounce things off people, steal any good stuff I hear, mix it all together and boom - instant game plan."
Ferentz added: "And Twitter just takes it to the next level. I get instant input on the fans: what they're thinking, how they would proceed in a given situation, whether I'm meeting their expectations. I wish more of my players would get on it, but they demanded that I make a ‘rule' that they couldn't use it. Said it would be too ‘distracting.' Can you believe that? Too distracting? Maybe if you find it distracting to be swimming in the bloodstream of the technological pulse of the moment."
At this point in the tape, another voice can be heard: "But what about fans who walked out as soon as that interception [by quarterback Jake Rudock] was thrown?" Ferentz can be heard to respond: "It took everything in my power to not say, 'Bless you, fans. Bless all of you.' Our crowd: What a bunch of blessed fair-weather blessings. They knew the game was essentially over, and I understand the parking situation. Many of these fans are parents who need to get home to their kids to spend a few more precious weekend minutes with them. I understand that."
Ferentz continues: "Frankly, [the fans] can all kiss my face as I walk out the blessed door, 'cause the blessed day is coming now. That is, the day is coming when I walk out of the locker room door and over to the Marriott where we're having a pancake breakfast honoring our fans. That day is specifically Sunday, September 22nd." Ferentz seems to choke up audibly as he concludes: "We'll see what they can do when I'm gone. I mean that literally, because I'm going on a humanitarian trip to Uganda as soon as the season is over and I'm inviting any fan who wants to go to come with me. I expect they will be able to help me build even more schools than we did last year, and I look forward to seeing it!"
Ferentz then can be heard to say: "Hey, I've got an idea: who's up for Cold Stone [Creamery]? My treat." Several voices are heard to shout "Yay!", then the tape cuts out.