clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:



Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports

It's Just One Practice.

They Always Look Like this in August.

They're Young. They'll Improve by November.

They're Just Preserving the Playbook for the Season.

So, Yeah. About Saturday Afternoon. We don't really need to address the specifics of Iowa's offensive meltdown in Saturday's open scrimmage.  It was a disaster, particularly on the offensive line.  But Iowa's principals on offense were quick to say that it was just an extraordinarily bad day for the Hawkeye offense.  Beathard started things off:

"Today, I think the defense got us. Obviously, they played better than we did today," Beathard said. "They brought better intensity. But you know, maybe tomorrow or the next practice, we'll get them. That's just kind of how it is during camp. We kind of flip-flop back and forth."

LeShun Daniels, who ran for negative yardage in limited action:

"We've had better days. This wasn't as good as we would have liked to have looked.''

Austin Blythe confirmed:

"There have definitely been days where we've been better," Blythe said. "It was just an off day, I guess."


"I think we are making progress, but I don't think today was a good indicator of how much progress we've made," Blythe said. "We've definitely got to compete harder and come out and just focus on the things that we can control, like fundamentals and technique and finishing plays. I don't think we did a good enough job as an offense as a whole today."

Ike Boettger (from the same post as Blythe's quote) also said that the offense does win some days, and that's certainly true.  It's also true that, while the defensive front has dominated Iowa's offensive line (the tackles in particular) the last two times we've watched, we don't see the four months of practices and training that took place in the interim.  All is not necessarily lost.  If this gets repeated in three weeks, all bets are off, but hold tight until then.

The Final Numbers. The stats are about as bad as the visual.  According to Morehouse, Iowa's offensive line allowed eight sacks combined to Drew Ott and Nate Meier (Ott had six).  Beathard finished just 11/22 for 115 yards.  Tyler Wiegers was a slightly-better 13/22 for 184 yards, one touchdown and one interception (his reps against the second-team defense did not include Drew Ott bull rushing his way into Wiegers' lap, which certainly helped).  Derrick Mitchell and Akrum Wadley got most of the carries, showing how important the running game was to the coaches Saturday.

At least the passing game wasn't atrocious.  Thirteen different players caught passes, which is probably a good thing, and average yards per completion weren't bad (though yards per attempt is a whole different issue).  If Beathard can stay upright and improve his completion percentage marginally, there could be more success through the air than there's been since Ken O'Keefe left.

A Crisis of Confidence. Saturday's vitriol was targeted largely at left tackle Boone Myers, who was victimized by Drew Ott throughout the scrimmage.  According to Kirk Ferentz, Saturday's failures were not the result of Myers' lack of ability or any technical issue.

This comes on the heels of a Media Day availability in which Myers admitted to being intimidated by having to follow the long line of Iowa left tackles, particularly Brandon Scherff.  Hesitation like that is expected and normal.  Where it ceases to be normal or funny is when it affects performance, which is apparently what Ferentz is saying here.  So let's all pitch in and build up Boone Myers' confidence and hope that it makes his feet work.


True freshman center James Daniels, who isn't even old enough to vote yet, will probably play this season.  Wide receiver Jerminic Smith, who caught a team-high four passes Saturday, also looks likely to avoid a redshirt and play immediately.

Kirk Ferentz is the Big Ten's worst coach in close games, according to Jon Solomon at CBS.  You shouldn't be surprised. (Technically Kevin Wilson is worse, but when your career win percentage is .400 and you've been doing it for 17 years, you're pretty bad at it.)

And as bad as this season could be, at least there's one thing that's going to be accomplished.