In an unprecedented turn of events, Brian Ferentz—son of Iowa football head coach Kirk Ferentz—was named the new offensive coordinator for the Iowa football team Monday afternoon, succeeding Greg Davis, who announced his retirement no fewer than 72 hours ago.
Alright so maybe a lot of us saw it coming. Maybe perhaps not this soon, but a lot of us knew it was going to happen. The timing between Davis’ retirement and this announcement tells us this was likely the plan well before the bowl game and maybe even something decided before the season. (During the presser Kirk said Davis told him he was retiring last week, which yeah sure whatever.)
Max postulated this morning that perhaps Ken O’Keefe or David Raih (there’s still a chance Raih could come back in some capacity) could be making a return to the program, but I think deep down we all knew this is the way it was going to be.
Brian Ferentz, from a media release:
“It is an honor and privilege to be named offensive coordinator for the University of Iowa football program,” said Brian Ferentz. “As a member of the Hawkeye coaching staff, a former player and a kid who grew up around the black and gold, this is a special day for my family and me.
“I’ve had the good fortune to work with -- and learn from -- a number of great coaches, two who are coaching Saturday in the AFC Divisional Playoffs, Bill O’Brien with the Houston Texans and Bill Belichick with the New England Patriots. It was an invaluable post-graduate coaching program for me. They taught me the value of coaching to your players’ strengths… and instilled in me a relentless determination to win.
“As we look ahead to 2017, we will develop this Iowa team to be tough, smart, and physical -- the foundation of Iowa football for the past 18 years. But to compete for a Big Ten championship, we must also be adaptable and flexible -- to make the changes necessary that will give us the best opportunity to win.”
Brian Ferentz’s work under Belichick and BOB shouldn’t be understated, but it can also be overstated to a degree as well. There needs to be a reasonable amount of stating going on when you mention he was the tight ends coach while Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski were making grown men cry on the football field in New England.
That doesn’t mean we should expect a Patriots-like offense to be installed overnight. Or ever. But we should also have a reasonable amount of optimism for some new wrinkles being added to this offense, even if you do subscribe to the notion that it’s Kirk Ferentz’s world and his coordinators are just living in it.
Brian Ferentz says he learned a lot about passing game during time in New England.— Tom Kakert (@HawkeyeReport) January 9, 2017
Job No. 1 is regaining balance offensively.— marcmorehouse (@marcmorehouse) January 9, 2017
And if you do believe in that line of thinking—that Kirk is really the one running the offense—then you should probably be most excited about the hiring of his son to the position. Brian might be the only one to have the chutzpah to stand up to his father, and remind him that the spread offense is here to stay and that Mark Weisman, despite his talents as a runner, isn’t an ideal option at running back on first and second down.
With BF’s move to OC, that leaves an opening at quarterbacks coach. Kirk said it’s possible Brian continues his offensive line coaching duties, but isn’t ruling anything out. So there’s at least one available job and as many as two openings right now on the Iowa football squad. There’s speculation that Iowa is looking for a new wide receivers coach as well, but that’s a blog post for a different time.
Anyway, as a Minnesota Vikings fan, I have to be pretty OK with this announcement, given BF’s ringing endorsement from a well-known Hawkeye and Viking.
So what say you, Friends of The Pants? Good move or bad?