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Wednesday Scrambler: Iowa’s struggle is not, repeat, NOT fun

The Hawkeye football team is a hot mess, but basketball media day is today, which means hope, or something. Maybe.

NCAA Football: Northwestern at Iowa
“Help me, please”
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Basketball season *begins* today! Isn’t that exciting, everyone? We can now turn our total attention to Fran and company instead of watching disappointment narrated by Beth Mowins on a weekly basis.

Seriously, she’s announcing Saturday’s game. Again.

Of course, what’s written above is facetious, as this is the United States of America and football owns all of our brains. So before we get to the fun that will be talking and reading about watching someone, thank god, someone other than Mike Gesell or Adam Woodbury play significant minutes on Carver’s floor, let’s talk about the growing inferno that is Hawkeye football. We start with what sensationalists would call a locker room rift and what others would assure you is no issue at all.

As is usually the case, the truth is likely somewhere in between. It is at least a little captivating, not to mention un-Iowa-like, to have two seniors, Desmond King and Riley McCarron, throw shade at a coaching staff and position group other than his own, respectively.

Even if King — who was voted a captain again this week after two weeks without that title — reneged on his criticism of his coaches, it’s hard not to blame him or disagree with what he had to say. The Hawks have looked awful for three consecutive weeks and given no hope of turning things around, so yeah, Desmond, you’re correct.

Admittedly, this one is playing more to the sensationalist in me, as McCarron’s comments didn’t seem as direct as his teammate’s. In a literal sense, McCarron is totally correct. It’s hard for C.J. Beathard and the pass-catchers to do anything when the Hawks have allowed 14 sacks (13th in the Big Ten) for a league-worst 107 yards. Those numbers rank 106th and 113th in the nation, respectively.

What is worth noting, as well, is the fact McCarron’s comments came after an eight-catch, 78-yard day with a touchdown. It’s nice to see the senior seemingly not caring for individual stats and being more concerned with the enormous issue at hand.

Maybe criticism from within gives this group a fire it has clearly missed, or maybe it goes the other way. Either way, it’d be great for the Hawks to figure things out soon. Very soon. Like before-the-end-of-this-post soon.

On a lighter note, Beathard’s punt was fantastic. His ability to escape and/or feel pressure wasn’t. He could also stand to put more air under deep balls to Jerminic Smith — he’ll run under them.

Okay, okay, enough complaining. The guy’s head is going to fall off at the rate we’re going now. Some sympathy is in order.

Despite all of the garbage that continues happening in the Hawkeye football program, there is something that gives me hope for the rest of the year and if nothing else, the future. Akrum Wadley has been awesome, and there’s no reason for the reallocate the Eno Benjamin statue funds. Those two should be fantastic in the backfield next year, assuming the offensive line is fixed by then.

If it’s not, well, I’m not sure Twitter will be able to handle it, assuming things haven’t been burned to the ground.

Fingers crossed the punt coverage team fields 11 guys for the rest of forever. Or at least this season, because watching Ron Coluzzi’s draft stock skyrocket on a weekly basis has been the highlight of this season.

Watching Washington knock the [snot] out of Stanford was equal parts satisfying and depressing. Should that begin to happen on a weekly basis, it could make a rematch in the Foster Farms Bowl quite interesting and sad.

If only we can be so lucky.

The last time Iowa played in Minneapolis, C.J. Beathard threw more touchdowns than Jake Rudock. That will likely happen again Saturday.

Enough football talk, onto basketball, because we have to, just this once until football is officially dead and/or the MLB playoffs end. But seriously, a few quick storylines to watch coming out of media day this afternoon.

  • How much of an upgrade will point guard Christian Williams be over Mike Gesell? Will he learn how not to settle for mid-range jumpers or consistently produce through an full slate Big Ten play?
  • Will Peter Jok live up to the expectation to carry this team on his shoulders? How will the remaining 35 percent of Iowa’s shots be distributed?
  • Has Fran spent the offseason learning how and when to call a time out?
  • And finally, GIVE ME A REASON NOT TO FEEL TRAPPED WATCHING HAWKEYE FOOTBALL. Seriously, can Zach McCabe come back and play tight end or something? ANYTHING, I’M TELLING YOU, ANYTHING!