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Hello Jerry Mailbag: The back-up QB, proper Brewery attire, punting and This Is Us

We have a STACKED Mail Bag this week with questions about punting, quarterbacks, Iowa staff changes, brewery dress codes and Week 2 of the This Is Us Power Rankings

NCAA Football: Penn State at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Maybe I’m showing my age here, but mailbags and advice columns were part of the reason I wanted to write as a bright-eyed youth. I would spend more time than I care to disclose trying to make the cut and ever since I’ve dreamed about having my own little corner of the internet to communicate with my (our) readers and engage in the shenanigans we all go through as sports fans and people (sad, I know). So, from this Thursday forward, I give The Pants back to you... the people. Do you have questions, comments, concerns, theories or general stories of debauchery? Send them all! I will feature as many as my editors will allow. You can send them to me via Twitter (@JerryScherwin), add them in as comments to these columns (you should probably put “Hello Jerry” as your header so I know it’s not a question directed to SMA or something), via email (, the Facebook comments of these posts and any other way I may have forgotten about. Let’s get it on!

Happy Thursday everyone. We almost made it. LETS GOOOOOOOOO!

Hello Jerry: Thank you, Jason for helping me end Blevin’s reign. It’s much appreciated.

To your question: As we talked about on The Pants Party Podcast yesterday, Iowa goes into their Homecoming as 18-point favorites. While I was a little skiddish on that line during the show itself, I now believe that there’s potential to blow the lid off that in the first half.

It’s all because I keep hearing our fearless leader Ben Ross yelling in my ear to “release the hounds”.

If I’m Brian Ferentz, I’m doing just that the minute Iowa gets the football. I’m taking this game against one of the worst college football teams in the country, let alone the Big Ten to prove to Kirk that this offense CAN BE MORE that the team that chips away at the wood block. I’m getting weird. I’m throwing on every first down. I’m calling Noah Fant’s number in hopes of getting him involved right away (he’s the ultimate mismatch that needs to be exploited in the second half of the season). I’m finding ways to get Ihmir Smith-Marsette open in the middle of the field (behind a defensive front that has their ears pinned back) on play action pass plays.

I want to use Illinois as our crash test dummy. I want to see what Nate Stanley and the onslaught of young weapons can do if and when Iowa is faced with the unthinkable and are forced to sling the rock around the yard again.

Even if that doesn’t happen and Iowa goes out and runs all over Illinois to keep everything normal and healthy before going into the bye, there is little doubt in my mind that Nate Stanley is Iowa’s quarterback. Now and in the future. He’s only played 5-career games, guys. He’s not even able to have a beer at Summit legally yet! And it’s not his fault that for the first half of that Michigan State game, Iowa ran it right into their offensive line. Don’t let that cloud your mind from the other good things he has done (Remember how we all felt after that Iowa State game? We all forgot that Tyler Wiegers even existed!).

Does he have a ball security issue? Kind of. Does he get too excited when he see’s receivers wide open down field? Kind of. Does he need to feel pressure a little bit better on his back side? Kind of.

But I don’t think it’s time to start splitting series with these guys like we’re Minnesota. Stanley won out in what WAS an #EvenBattle. Unless Iowa loses the rest of their games BECAUSE he can’t hit a pass down field and only because he can’t hit a pass down field, it’s going to stay that way.

Hello Jerry: Thank you, Jordan, for helping me in my efforts to take back the block from Blevins. Your not one, but THREE questions/comments did not go unnoticed my friend.

Now, the dress code concern you bring up above is something that I’ve thought a lot about. Probably too much if I’m being honest. You see, I’m not a GQ kind of guy. I’m at my happiest when I get to wear a lightweight long sleeve shirt and some baggy athletic shorts no matter the occasion. I’ve been dressing like a Dad for 10 years now. And I love it.

I’m not being facetious one bit when I say that when I “go out” and have to dress it up a little bit on the weekends, I wear khaki golf shorts and soft cotton blend sports tee.

That’s what I’m comfortable in. Sue me.

I realize that sometimes that just doesn’t cut it. There are lots of places (hipster bars, restaurants that serve Sunday Brunch with bottomless Mimosas and clubs for example) where I’ll get looked at by most of the partisans both working and visiting; and it’s not in the “that’s a dope old school Rose Bowl Iowa shirt” kind of way. One of the more awkward times this has happened was in 2012 when I went to Red Brick Brewery in Atlanta. In my prototypical garb, I marched confidently into their establishment ready to drop some of the little money I finally had on an afternoon of tasting interesting beers with a local Georgia flare.

I was immediately out of place.

James (he was the master brewer) had a Captain Hook mustache and was wearing suspenders with smiley faces on them. Josh (he worked the front desk) wore a beanie (it was 96 degrees outside) and had a chain wallet in the back pocket of his black skinny jeans. “Crash” (he didn’t seem to have a job except to hang out and play ping pong with customers) wore corduroys, Airwalk’s and a flannel button down.

All of the other patrons on my tour? All dressed as if it was November and they were about to go apple picking in Wisconsin with a photo opportunity at the end.

I don’t know about you, Jordan, but I don’t want to conform to that. I don’t want to wear those kinds of jeans with a plaid shirt that’s too tight in the arm pit just to drink a beer with a little more hops than the Buffalo Wild Wings down the street offers.

Screw that.

You do you my man. Enjoy those deliciously fragrant lagers in your Nintendo flat bill and life preserver if you want. Nobody should feel as though they have to look like the millennial version of the Monopoly guy just to drink. As long as your money is green and their beer is cold, I give you permission to rock a robe if you damn well please. This is America.

Hello Jerry: That’s a great idea buddy! Let’s try one now:

Hello Jerry: Hi Evie. I noticed that Blevins didn’t answer your question. He probably didn’t have the time. You know who DOES have the time? Me. I have the time to answer your question that you probably wont read unless I send you this direct link which I might JUST DO because I’m petty. Anyways, the obvious answer here is Kinnick Stadium.

You might be asking yourself, “But that’s in Iowa... will there even be a Mets fan there?”

I can assure you, someone in that stadium is going to love a summer spent at Citi Field. He’d probably even be interested in getting matching Mike Piazza jerseys and I know you’ve always dreamt of having matching Mike Piazza jerseys with your manfriend. The cool thing about Iowa is that sports fans have free will to hand pick their favorite professional sports teams. I’ve met Cowboy fans. I’ve met Yankee fans (gross I know). I’ve met a San Diego Padres fan!

I’m sure there’s a Mets fan SOMEWHERE.

Plus! Iowa is know for their niceness. That checks all the boxes.

You’re welcome.

Hello Jerry: LOL oh Matt.

I don’t care if Nathan Stanley grows a second head that can’t be fit for a helmet and continuously gets concussed, half the offensive and defensive line gets in trouble for drag racing their mopeds through the Ped Mall, Akrum Wadley gets every single touchdown called back for excessive celebration or if Iowa found a way to lose to Illinois. Barring Kirk or Brian or KOK or Phil Parker taking a giant deuce on the brand new Hawkeye at the 50-yard line, this staff is locked and loaded.

Now, Gary Barta on the other hand...

Q: At what point is the punting so bad that the offense goes for it every 4th down (PlayStation Style)?

— indyhawk

Hello Jerry: I’m going to choose to read this question as if you are asking me to answer it as if I’m Kirk Ferentz. I am obviously not Kirk Ferentz as I don’t have beautiful peppered hair or squinty eyes that make Robert De Niro jealous. But, if I did have beautiful peppered hair and squinty eyes, that point would be right now. RIGHT. NOW. It’s not like Colten Rastetter is all of a sudden going to become a “normal” punter that can boom a beautiful ball 50-yards down field with hang time that gives out coverage team plenty of time to surround the returner.

He’s always going to be a rugby-style kicker and unless he can figure out how to pay off the opposition so the ball can hit the turf and skip again, nothing is going to change.

If the Iowa coaching staff doesn’t want to take the redshirt off the kid, I’m either going for it anytime I pass my own 40-yard line or I’m asking Nate Stanley if he can (or can learn how) to pooch punt during the bye week. At least then you can have him read how the defense lines up before deciding on going for it or pooching it away.

But, alas, I am not Kirk Ferentz. Real Kirk Ferentz will continue to punt when his heart tells him to punt and we will all continue to cringe.

WARNING: This is the end of the real Hello Jerry mailbag. From here forward I will be talking about This Is Us. If you do not want to read past this point, I will leave you here, thankful for spending part of your afternoon bathroom break with me. If you want to ask a question for next week, send them to me @jerryscherwin or use the hashtag #HelloJerry.

Q: As the person who proposed the power rankings, I endorse the request to expand the rankings to other major players. HML’s point about a list of three is quite valid, especially considering Jerry’s pre-determined #1 ranking for Randall (is Randall the Alabama of This Is Us?).

— Hawktober

I was a little premature on the pre-determination on Randall...

  1. KEVIN!!!!!!: What a huge up swing from last week. Not only did he find his inner George Clooney by wearing a diaper and crawling on a floor during the taping of a tv show inside a tv show, but we got to see the Kevin that cares about Randall again. The Kevin that actually LOVES Randall. The vulnerable Kevin. The Kevin that isn’t jaded by Hollywood. There is only one show that can make someone I thought “had a lot of work to do” accomplish a lot of that work in one hour long episode.
  2. Adult Kate: She stood up for herself. She shamed Mandy Moore for being a horrible mother. That’s a HUGE step in the right direction to her eventually... TELLING THE POLICE THAT HER MOTHER AND MIGUEL KNOW MORE THAN WHAT THEY LET ON ABOUT JACK’S DEATH.
  3. Child Kate: If my imaginative daughter one day grabs me by the face and tells me everything is going to be ok, I’m going to lose it for hours and hours.
  4. Jack: Fights off his alcohol addiction by getting his Rocky Balboa on a week before Rocky Balboa is on (the show)! I don’t know how this man comes up with some of the things he does as a father, but substituting whiskey for an hour on a punching bag in a killer gym is absolutely brilliant. I support you always, Jack. Father and husband of the year every year.
  5. Toby: A buddy and I decided we were going to get t-shirts made that say Team Kate on the front and #FOREVA on the back. It’s probably going to be a gold mine, just like every single second that Toby is on the screen.
  6. Beth: She finally fell for Kevin and helped guide her husband down a path despite his perfectionist tendencies.
  7. Miguel: Who doesn’t love pigs in blankets and some nut cheese spread?
  8. Randall: I never thought I’d write this but... he didn’t do it for me this week. I just didn’t buy him freaking out over something he was so sure of last week. If he’s such a perfectionist, wouldn’t he have already gone through all of that in his head BEFORE he settled on wanting to adopt/foster a child? Just seemed out of character.
  9. Last but not least, we have Rebecca. She took Kate’s wrath right on the chin and I actually appreciate that. While I still loathe when she’s on the screen, I’ll admit that she wasn’t as insufferable as she generally is this episode. And yes, I still think she’s the cause of Jack’s death some how, some way.

Once again, thank you all for your questions. I’ll be back here next week, same time, same place. If you want to get a jump start on sending me your questions, feel free to tweet me @JerryScherwin or use the hashtag #HelloJerry.