The Iowa Hawkeyes will enter the upcoming season with high expectations and a high ranking, but their senior leader says that won’t mean a thing if they don’t do the work. Quarterback Ricky Stanzi says the goals are the same this season as they are every year.
Stanzi says the thought process regarding the expectations are the same as any year, “It doesn’t mean anything, you know, we’ve come off years where we don’t have any expectations, and we’ve come off years where we’ve had high expectations,” Stanzi says,”I’m sure the bar is set pretty high this year as far as people are concerned and how they think the season should go, but for us right now it’s about getting our work in and understanding what we need to get better at, doing those things, watching on film and actually go out and correcting our mistakes.”
Stanzi says if they prepare themselves for the season, then everything else will take care of itself. Stanzi says if they can do that, they will be fine, and he is not too worried about the expectations, as they have too much work to do and they have to focus on that before the first game. The majority of the offensive skill players return this season and Stanzi says that’s a lot of the reason for the expectations.
Stanzi says the team has a lot of experience and they are good guys that want to get better. “So you know, we’ll see what we can do with that,” Stanzi says, “with that experience comes a lot of knowledge of football, but at the same time there’s still the work ethic that has to be put in front it and there’s still something that has to be taken from these practices. Just ’cause we have the experience doesn’t mean that we are gonna capitalize on it, there’s still a lot of things that everyone can get better at.” Stanzi was asked how he has become a better player.
Stanzi says that won’t be known until they get on the field, he says you can feel more confident, but you can’t know how anyone had gotten better until they get on the field and play. Iowa had several games that went down to the wire last year, and Stanzi was asked if he’d rather have to win with a last second drive, or if he’d prefer to be ahead and run out the clock.
Stanzi says if both are wins, it doesn’t matter, although he’s heard that some fans and parents would like the games not to be so close as they were hard on their hearts last season. “If it’s a win, any football player will take it, not matter how it comes,” Stanzi says. Iowa opens the season September 4th against Eastern Illinois.