OH MAN. HERE WE ARE. The inaugural mailbag here on Black Heart Gold Pants. We got some questions, and boy am I going to have fun with these. I just need to get in the right mindset...
You sent in the questions on Facebook, Twitter, in the comments here. Let’s see what you had to ask. All opinions of mine are fact. Nothing is up for debate. NOTHING.
Is this defense capable of being the best in Kirk Ferentz’s tenure? That 2009 defense was 3rd nationally in pass efficiency defense and allowed just 0.69 (nice) rushing TDs per game. According to CFB Analytics, they were the 11th AdjD in the nation. Last year, they were 26th but return practically everyone and could leapfrog an Ohio State that returns only 3 defensive starters. What’s the likelihood of being the best defense in the B1G, in KF’s tenure, and top-5 nationally?
Honestly? I’m probably going to say that none of these things happen this year. I don’t think the defense will be bad, because as you pointed out, they return a lot of starters from a great defense last year. But the ones that they’re missing are the reasons they shouldn’t improve as much. If they got Ott back for the year, I’d be more inclined to say yes, but without him last year, they generated very little pass rush and that hurt the secondary (which also loses Jordan Lomax).
Michigan should be #1 in the conference, as they’ll have a STOUT defense this year with Jabrill Peppers terrorizing opponents, but I think Iowa could be top-3 in the B1G. I don’t think this defense will be better than 2009, either. There’s potential, though, especially if the Hawks can generate that pass rush they needed so badly last year.
Do you think Gameday will attend the Michigan at Iowa game?
Maybe. I look at the schedule, and this is definitely the premiere game in CFB as of right now. These teams would need to run the table to get there, though, and anything could happen between now and Week 11. Other games I look at that could challenge this one for Gameday honors: Stanford at Oregon, USC at Washington, and there are a couple SEC games that could put up a fight since ESPN loves them so much.
But there’s definitely a chance. Michigan could be undefeated (toughest game prior is at MSU) and Iowa could be there, too. If they’re both there, 100% chance of Gameday.
Panchero’s or Chipotle?
As the resident Mexican on this here staff, I feel I’m very well equipped to answer this question. I’ve grown up my whole life eating bomb ass Mexican food at family functions and just in general, so let me guide you to the right answer:
Chipotle has much higher quality ingredients, in my opinion. All their meats just taste better. They also have barbacoa, which is the superior choice to any meat you could want to put in a burrito. Their burrito bowls are also much better, mostly because they have the better fillings. Did you know they have a “secret menu item,” the Quesarito? They start by making a quesadilla, then after they make it, they OPEN IT UP AND PUT BURRITO STUFF IN IT THEN ROLL IT INTO A BURRITO. The employees hate when you do this (I had an ex-girlfriend who worked there and told me so) and it costs like $3 extra, but I did it once and it was glorious.
Panchero’s, however, does indeed boast superior tortillas. By about 100%. It’s not even close. Chipotle tortillas come from a bag, where Panchero’s puts so much love and preparation into theirs. Panch (can I call you Panch, mi amor?) has queso, too, and when I’m craving queso, there’s nothing like it in the world. Chipotle doesn’t even offer queso, because they’ve yet to delve into the market and probably never will. Shameful. Lastly, Panch is also open late in downtown IC, and when I go get hammered in the ped mall, there’s nothing like intoxicated Panchero’s.
The verdict? Qdoba always wins. Sorry, y’all.
2 questions. 1) What are the odds Stanley is the back-up QB this season? and 2) What is your favorite Iowa FB win? (Mine is ‘04 Capital One Bowl)
Well to answer your first question, I don’t think there’s a chance that Stanley is the #2 behind Beathard. I don’t think Kirk will want to burn his redshirt, especially when CJB will be providing the heavy work all season for the Hawks. I can see the argument as to why Stanley should be #2 if he’s truly better than Wiegers (game experience, etc.) but I think Kirk is generally loyal to his older guys and won’t displace Tyler just yet.
To answer your second question, the most fun I’ve ever had at an Iowa win was the 2011 Pittsburgh game when they came back from that huge 4th quarter deficit to win. I also had a lot of fun at 2015 Pitt (something about Pitt just brings out the fun in these Hawkeyes). I’m a bit younger than the average person hanging around these parts, so I have plenty of recency bias in my answers. The most fun I’ve ever had at an Iowa game, win or lose, however? It was the B1G Championship Game. I had such a good time and while a win would’ve been nice, I couldn’t have been happier to be there.
How are you settling in to the new gig? Got any plans for recurring posts/new content going forward?
We’re settling in quite nicely, I think! We’re still working out some kinks and scheduling problems, but so far, so good! If anyone ever has any critiques/suggestions, we’d always be happy to hear what you all think we could do better or should try out. You know where to find us...
As for recurring posts and new content, this mailbag is something I’d like to do moving forward if it’s well received. I also wanted to maybe do something about marching bands because those can be fun. Hawkize has his recurring piece that will start with football season and StoopsMyAss might be involved a little bit, as he’s mentioned a new idea that we really enjoy. Jonah has his “Overreaction Monday,” which might be a thing and Dylan has his “LOVE IT or LEAVE IT” which is a great concept. Danny has his mixed links thing, too. We’re just kinda figuring it out as we go and trying out new things.
Is the amount of freshmen supposedly playing this year a good or bad thing?
Could be either, really. While experience is good, these guys could go a long way if they have the talent to survive at this level. These young guys will get a chance to work out the kinks in the first couple games against Miami University and Iowa State. NDSU will be a challenge, I think, but other than that, this schedule is very friendly in terms of allowing the freshmen to get up to speed and figure out what they’re about before Iowa gets to the powerhouses later in the season.
If they can’t figure them out, though, yeesh... Depth at some positions will be less than ideal.
What split of offensive personnel do you see Iowa using the majority of the season? 2 TE, 1 FB at all times?
What’s your perfect tailgating setup?
Are you one of those guys who yells at people in front of him to sit down at sporting events?
You show up to a potluck and all they have for dessert are apple pies and cherry pies. You can only choose one. What do you choose?
Who do you think are the candidates for a breakout year in Iowa Football?
What’s the best shade tree?
What’s your ideal date?
Ice Cream: Chocolate, Vanilla, Neapolitan?
Halftime activity at the game? Watch the band or fight the lines at the concession stands/bathrooms?
RAPID FIRE TIME LET’S GO:
Iowa will never use a FB this year, going to go full out Oregon and just use the spread.
Perfect tailgating setup is BEER AND MORE BEER AND LUNCH FOOD AT 8AM. Everything else is flexible.
Quick, meaningless anecdote: I went to the Minnesota/Iowa game last year and my girlfriend’s brother is a Gopher fan (I guess you don’t choose family) and he and I just didn’t want to sit down during halftime. Student sections are for standing, right? And so we stood, as I often do. And people yelled and yelled and yelled and threw a couple things and yelled some more because we were in the way/Gopher fan so let’s be mean (disclaimer: to be in the way, they would have wanted to look at the grass in between the tunnel and sideline, so definitely let’s be mean). So no, I’m not one of the people who yells at people to sit down, because I’m more often than not the asshole who won’t stop standing.
Neither. Pie is bad.
Breakout year is going to be a young receiver, obviously, and someone on the DL has to break out because shit if they don’t then that’ll be less than good. Let’s go with Cedrick Lattimore and Adrian Falconer.
Best shade tree is an oak. I’m more of an oak guy. Oak is nice.
Ideal date is one where I don’t have to pay a lot of money because I’m a poor. That said, the best dates I’ve been to have been to sporting events. Can never go wrong with one of those (unless you root for opposite teams because I’ve done that and someone is always salty at the end of the day).
Favorite halftime activity is standing up while everyone sits down, as previously mentioned. Maybe watch the band if it’s a good show theme.
Would you rather cheer for Nebraska or staple your nuts to the side of your leg?
Inside or outside of my leg?