After two straight losses Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz realizes his team will draw criticism but hopes it is not directed at individual players who may not have lived up to expectations. The offensive line has been in the spotlight during Iowa’s 2-2 start which has included losses to Arizona State and Michigan. Ferentz says he doesn’t care if it’s directed at him because he’s getting paid. He says he’s not bullett proof, but he’s close. Ferentz says if a guy doesn’t become a starter, it doesn’t mean he’s a failure. Ferentz says there’ve been a lot of great guys who never hit the game field and he says there are a lot of reasons for it. He says it’s “darn hard” to be a starter in the Big Ten. The comments were in part due to questions about offensive lineman Blake Larsen who was highly touted out of Atlantic, but has yet to break into the starting lineup. Another area of concern is turnovers. The Hawks had five in the loss at Michigan. Ferentz says one for sure was being on the road and not being a veteran enough team to do what they were trying to do. He says the interceptions have been inexperience or a breakdown and he says until they get them cleaned up they’re not going to win consistently. Jermelle Lewis is having disappointing start to his senior season. In three games Lewis has totaled 151-yards. Ferentz says there haven’t been a lot of clean holes and he says things aren’t going to be as good as 2002 when most of the linemen went on to play in the NFL. But Ferentz says things are going to improve. The Hawks host Michigan State this weekend in a battle of 2-2 teams. Ferentz says it sounds like the Spartans are a parallel team to Iowa, with both trying to find themselves in the early going.
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