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Monday Morning Musings...on a Tuesday

I gots a kid, give a guy a break.

NCAA Football: Western Michigan at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

As many of you know, I live right over the Ben Franklin Bridge in the ol’ Dirty Jerz. My wife, who I met at Iowa, grew up right outside of Philadelphia so when we first got married and lived in Orlando the discussion of where we would ultimately raise a family between Chicago and Philadelphia came up often. We talked a lot about Chicago and for a minute or two it looked like it could be THE spot, but then a few job opportunities opened up in the Northeast that pushed the scales in favor of Philly.

So we moved back here.

I say all of this for two reasons:

  1. I’m very very happy with how everything ended up. Do I miss the Midwest and being able to go to an Iowa home game on a whim? Yes, yes I do.
  2. I’m kind of lying...I’m very very happy with how everything ended up accept for one thing...


I’m surrounded by winning. I’m surrounded by fanbases that DEMANDS (and yes, I mean demands) excellence.

Meanwhile, I’m a (* whispers *) bears/whitesox/iowa/bulls fan...

Not great, Bob!

This means that my daughter (and soon-to-be second daughter) is also surrounded by the god foresaken EAGLES/PHILLIES/VILLANOVA/76ERS/PENN STATE fans... most of them being half of her family! To make matters worse, she was obviously born here (and unless something drastically changes), will continue to grow up here. She will have no allegiances to Chicago or the Midwest. Why would she? Because her dear ol’ dad does? He’s miserable most of the time watching those teams anyways.

Why bother?

Hell, if she’s anything like how I think she’ll be, she’ll probably pelt me with snowballs, give me the bird and scream sing “E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!” after the Bears Triple Doink a playoff winning Field Goal in like 2041.

Plus, with the way Chicago ownership is handling all of this MAJOR success, I don’t know that I even want this sports life for her. If she wants to pull for the Philly pro-teams, how can I blame her?

But what I do know is, I do not want her to be a Penn State fan. I do not want her to go to Penn State. I don’t want her to tour Penn State. I don’t want her to even think Penn State is an option.

So, with my wife out of town on a business trip, I did something I’m not entirely proud of...

I bribed my kid with ice cream to get her to say “Go Hawks”.

No seriously... I bribed my 14 month old daughter with ice cream in hopes of getting her to say “Go Hawks” on command and cement that Iowa=fun (even if it’s not like that on many, many Saturdays).

My plan is for her to say this at least 100 times at daycare and then again all day on Saturday. And my hope is that it’s so damn cute that the football Gods are appeased and allow our dear ol’ Hawkeyes the ability to beat those pesky Lions by 50.

You’re welcome.

Let’s get into the musings:

  1. I’m not going to list to you all...I thought Iowa was going to lose that game on Saturday. There was so much pain. SO MUCH PAIN. Everything that could go wrong kept going wrong and that was before a weather delay. Thank the heavens for Lisa Bluder who I believe used her magical Midas touch on the football team while she was in the booth promoting the Crossover at Kinnick.
  2. I so badly want to say that I’m not ready to pull the plug on Brian Ferentz and his offense yet, but if I did I would just be trolling you all in hopes of firing up the comments. I’ll save you from it. His offense is like a damn EKG and it’s good when it’s steady and disappointing and down right terrifying when it’s not.
  3. I like the way the offensive line is starting to gel in the run game. That Western Michigan could’ve gone a very, very bad direction, but I thought those big boys up front took it upon themselves to open up lanes for the assortment of Iowa running backs that saw the field. They will need to be borderline perfect in both the run and pass blocking game this coming Saturday as Penn State’s defensive line are game breakers/wreckers.
  4. I wish I could go back in time quite often when it comes to Iowa Football. If I had that Doritos time machine, I would figure out a way to have George Kittle hang onto the ball in the Big Ten Championship instead of having it picked off. I would whisper into Kirk’s ear every 4th down play call Michigan State ran in that same game. I would tell Ricky Stanzi to throw the ball away against Northwestern. I would tell DJK to move out of the house he’s living in. And I would also make sure Cade McNamara didn’t scramble on August 13th in hopes of keeping him as healthy as possible.

5. Speaking of injuries...damn do I feel horrible for Luke Lachey. The kid deserved to have a great season that would take him down the path of so many other Iowa Tight Ends. Here’s hoping for a speedy recovery and a magical (fingers crossed) senior season back at Iowa before becoming yet another first round draft pick for TEU.

6. I have to circle back here - IOWA RAN THE BALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL! I’m so excited about this. It happened at the exact right time too. Look, I stare at a giant signed Shonn Greene poster every single day as I try to make a living. On that poster is his stat line against each of his opponents that year (over 100-yards in every game for those that shamefully cannot remember). It’s probably doing way more damage than good for my Iowa psyche at this point, but it continues to remind me how much I adored those teams that could run for 200-yards and play action their way to 250 more through the air. Are there a few injuries that are concerning in the backfield right now? You’re damn right. But Leshon Williams, Kamari Moulton and Terrell Washington Jr. were impressive in their own respect. There is some real and exciting depth at this position and I hope Brian and the offensive staff continue to find ways to highlight them (especially with a QB on 1.5 legs and a depleted tight end unit).

7. Maybe I’m delusional, but Penn State seemed VERY beatable against the Illini. Iowa should be able to get after Drew Allar and if our secondary plays like normal (enough of this 64-yard touchdown garbage), Iowa 100% has a shot of winning this game in a hostile environment. If the defense can make him make a mistake early and rattle that raucous crowd they have more than a punchers chance.

8. I think it is LOL funny that the Iowa media are now openly getting angry at the Drive for 325. This is college football and Iowa employs the son of the coach at an important coordinator position and that unit has STRUGGLED. And because of this, that son’s former boss decided it was a great decision to put a clause in his contract (oh, Bloodpunch) and probably honestly thought it wouldn’t be a big deal! Let the internet have this guys. If you can’t embrace it, ignore it. But I assure you, complaining about how it’s all about the Drive for 325 will only increase that kind of conversation in your mentions...

9. 240 points left ;)