Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz says the Hawkeyes have a long ways to go but admits his team got a confidence boost after Saturday’s 27-21 win at Iowa State. The Hawkeyes close out non conference play at home on Saturday against Western Michigan. “We all felt like we had a chance to have a good team, we still feel that way, we’re not there yet,” Ferentz says. He says they have a lot to work on, but also says they are 4 points away from being undefeated right now.
The Hawkeyes are 2-1 and with a victory on Saturday would have a three game winning streak for the first time since October of 2010. “The guys are working hard and winning on the road in a tough environment, which we all knew it was going to be tough and winning on the road is tough, history has proven that…so the real challenge is going to be what do we learn from those situations,” Ferentz says.
Ferentz says the Hawkeyes are making strides in two areas: they are averaging nearly 240 yards of rushing per game while giving up just over 97 yards per game on the ground. He says it helps if you can run and if you can’t stop the run it is going to be a tough season.
Ferentz says a young defensive line is making progress and that has helped the run defense, and overall he says they played good defense with the exception of one play and they have to improve and play the full game.
Ferentz would like to see Damon Bullock and Jordan Canzeri get more carries to help keep Mark Weisman fresh. Weisman has 85 carries in three games. “I think it is really important that we utilize the whole group and bring them along so Mark can be at his best the whole season. Mark to me has proven himself to be a really good player and he brings a really good energy to our football team. I think the other guys are good players too — we just have to get them integrated in there a little bit,” Ferentz says.
Ferentz likes the progress of the offense and believes it will make more big plays down the road. He says Jake Rudock is doing a lot of good things at quarterback and overall they know they can do a lot of things better and can’t waste a day working on improving.