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Iowa Football: Did the Hawkeyes Get Their Offensive Coordinator Hire Right?

The Hawkeyes have their guy. But is he the right guy?

NCAA Football: Western Michigan at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NCAA. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Iowa Hawkeyes fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate in the weekly emailed surveys.

It’s official. After we got the leaks last weekend, the University of Iowa officially announced Wednesday that Tim Lester is your new offensive coordinator for the Iowa Hawkeyes.

As we’ve outlined, Lester comes to Iowa City after one season as an offensive analyst with the Green Bay Packers where he was responsible for preparing the scout team offense each week to give the 1st team defense a quality look.

Prior to his time in the NFL, Lester spent six years as the head coach of his alma mater, Western Michigan. During that time, the Broncos won 37 games and went 1-2 in three bowl games. Despite being the head coach during that period, Lester was also the lead play caller from 2018-2020. WMU’s offense ranked inside the top-35 nationally in each of those seasons.

However, the UI’s official release fails to mention the massive dropoff in his final season at the helm. That miserable 2022 season cost Lester his job. It also completely ignores the three seasons Lester spent in Syracuse as the offensive coordinator, calling plays for two of them. There, the numbers are meaningfully worse than what we saw at Western Michigan.

Of course, the hiring announcement also is focused solely on who Iowa did hire and not who the could have hired. Knowing former Duke OC Kevin Johns was in town interviewing for the job late last week makes for an easy comparison of resumes. You can pick nits about who was calling plays when, but Johns was good enough for Lester to hire as his OC back at Western Michigan in 2017 and the production of the offenses he has worked on has been unquestionable.

So, did Kirk Ferentz get this right? Is Tim Lester the right person for the job? How do YOU feel about it, Hawkeye fans?

And at the end of the day, does any of it matter? Even if Lester is tremendous, will he be allowed to run his stuff, or will he be handcuffed by Kirk Ferentz’s philosophies and demands?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below and in this week’s Reacts Poll.