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It's Not Plagiarism If You Link To It: Norm Parker's Last Hurrah

Norm Parker on Coaching (via asolsma)

Last night, legendary Hawkeye assistant coach Norm Parker announced his retirement from Iowa will be after the Bowl. Parker has spent 48 years as a football coach and 13 at with the Hawkeyes.

While serving as defensive coordinator at Iowa, Parker's defense have been some of Iowa's best. Per Hawkeye Sports, here are some of the accomplishments,

Under Parker's direction, Iowa has ranked among the top 10 nationally in rushing defense five times. Iowa has been in the top 10 in scoring defense three of the past four seasons. In 2010, Iowa was fifth nationally in total defense (332.1), sixth in rushing defense (101.5) and seventh in scoring defense (17.0)

For as good as Norm's career at Iowa has been, some are getting a little carried away. Jon Miller writes,

Simply put, Iowa football would not be Iowa football without Norm Parker. Iowa football will have a tough time remaining Iowa football without Norm Parker.

The first sentence I can agree with, the second, um, not so much. Sure, you can point to the times over the last couple of seasons when Norm wasn't present and say there's your proof. But you have to remember that the rest of the coaching staff was spread thin and had less time to prepare than if they were the defensive coordinator. The future is uncertain but it's certainly not scary. Iowa can pay a decent salary and offer excellent bonuses. Ferentz will find a capable replacement and the staff may ultimately be better for it.

These next few days, if not weeks, will be interesting as we wait to see who the person to fill Parker's shoes will be. Pat Harty writes that "if Phil Parker doesn't get promoted now, it seems unlikely that he ever would." Marc Morehouse also hints that it may be Phil Parker but lists a few other candidates.

Regardless of who the newest addition to the coaching staff is we still get Norm for one more game, and it's a tough one. Parker will have to figure out a way to shut down Oklahoma's Landry Jones, much like the last two seasons when Iowa faced Georgia Tech and Missouri in bowls. The Hawkeyes surrendered many yards against Blaine Gabbert last year but when the clock hit 00:00 it was Iowa that was victorious. I can't wait to see what the legendary defensive coordinator comes up with for this one.

The football team started practice Friday for the Bowl. Marcus Coker says the team is fresh and "We haven't been on the field for a while, so getting those pads back on felt good." WIth practice comes practice pics. Some interesting things stick out like a DLine of Carl Davis, Darian Cooper and Mike Hardy (pic #13). Several freshmen got caught on camera, Lomax, Campbell, McMinn, Rudock and Walsh make an appearance.

Oklahoma will be the ninth bowl team Iowa will face this season. Iowa finished 4-4 against the eight bowl teams (Iowa State, Penn State, Purdue, Northwestern, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Pitt) faced this year. Oklahoma also faced eight teams that earned bowl invites, they finished 5-3 against those opponents. Iowa is 3-1 all-time against Big 12 teams in bowl games and 0-1 all-time against Oklahoma.

It wasn't a good week for the Hawkeye men's basketball team and instate road trips. The Hawks lost by 20 to UNI and lost 86-76 Friday night to Iowa State. Devyn Marble again got the start at point guard and led the team with a career high 21 points. It was the same song and dance as Iowa State poured in eight three pointers against Iowa's weak defense.

Melsahn Basabe added 18 points and 9 rebounds raising his season averages to 8.5 (pts) and 5.3 (reb). His conditioning has been an issue all season and he says he still isn't back to where he feels comfortable. Basabe says "It's been improving the last three games and over the last three weeks it definitely has."

The Hawkeyes not only lost to Iowa State Friday, they lost a member of the coaching staff. Former Hawkeye Ryan Bowen had served as Iowa's video coordinator since McCaffery hired him upon his arrival. Bowen, per NCAA rules, wasn't a big part of coaching outside of video and scouting. Coach McCaffery says, "I think it's a great opportunity."

Iowa has a week off for finals and will take on Drake Saturday, December, 17th.

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