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38 Days Until Iowa Hawkeye Football: Monte Pottebaum and Greg Fagan

Monte Pottebaum’s game harkens back to a bygone era. So does his haircut.

NCAA Football: Iowa at Illinois Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

BHGP’s countdown to the start of Iowa football season marches on, and this edition contains a double-feature. Two players will don #38 for the Hawkeyes this season; one a former walk-on who has emerged as one of the most impactful and recognizable players on Iowa’s roster, and another hoping to follow in his older teammate’s footsteps.

Monte Pottebaum – Senior

Larchwood, IA (West Lyon)

6’1”, 244 lbs.

2022 Projection: Starting fullback

Not many college football teams still carry fullbacks on their roster, and even fewer would go so far as to create a hype film for one of them. Then again, not all schools have a player like Monte Pottebaum with enough legitimate highlights to justify such an endeavor.

It’s hard to imagine Pottebaum, who takes the field every Saturday armed with a mullet and a neckroll and looks like a mashup of Hulk Hogan and Kenny Powers, playing any position other than fullback. Yet the former high school first-team All-State honoree arrived at Iowa in 2019 intending to make a name for himself at linebacker. While other Big Ten linebackers likely wish he had not made the switch to offense, the change has worked extremely well for Pottebaum and for the running backs who benefit from the holes created by him flattening every linebacker who gets in his way. Pottebaum is an excellent blocker,

a red-zone weapon,

and is surprisingly capable in the open field, as he demonstrated against Nebraska at the 2:16 mark of the following video:

Kirk Ferentz has commented that Pottebaum is a good a fullback as any he has seen in Iowa, and Pottebaum’s versatile role in the Hawkeye offense basically guarantees that he will once again be in the running for the Lowman Trophy, the award given to college football’s best fullback for which Pottebaum was a finalist last season.

As Pottebaum enters his third season as Iowa’s starting fullback, another #38 will look to carve out a role for himself during his first season on campus.

Greg Fagan – Freshman

Council Bluffs, IA (St. Albert)

6’3”, 214 lbs.

2022 Projection: Reserve linebacker/special teams contributor

Greg Fagan comes to Iowa City fresh from earning first-team All-State honors as a senior. His brother, senior Matt Fagan, is currently listed as Iowa’s second-team left guard after earning a scholarship at the beginning of 2022, a feat Greg will likely hope to replicate. Given Iowa’s depth at linebacker, Fagan is likely looking at a redshirt season or a small special teams role in 2022. However, if playing linebacker doesn’t work out for Fagan, he could always consider following Pottebaum’s lead and switching to fullback, a position he also played in high school to some success.