First up, Iowa has three outstanding defensive players to replace. But, Iowa has outstanding returning starters, as well as experienced reserves filling those remaining spots as the Hawkeyes enter the 2010 season.
"It's been a good month." ~ Kirk Ferentz about his off season
The strength is the returning defensive line for Iowa, all four starters back.
On offense, Iowa must replace three starting offensive linemen and an outstanding TE. The offense is lead by senior QB Ricky Stanzi. Iowa returns outstanding skill players. Senior TE Allen Reisner was like a starter, as the second TE in Iowa's offense in '09.
Iowa returns just about everyone in special teams, which is usually a strength of a Kirk Ferentz team.
The Hawkeyes have a solid schedule in 2010.
It's great to see Nebraska coming to the Big Ten in 2011. We agree with Coach Ferentz. It should be a good rivalry game and Nebraska will enjoy some other solid match ups as well in the Big Ten.
The national prospective of the Big Ten Conference. Coach Ferentz was an offensive line coach under J. Hayden Fry from 1981 to 89. He was hired to replace Fry in November 1998 and is entering his 12Th season as head coach at Iowa.
The team to beat is Ohio State. The Buckeyes have been the most consistent team the past five seasons, winning a share or outright championship. We agree Ohio State has been very solid throughout the Ferentz era as an offensive line coach and as a head coach.
"I just think the Big Ten is fantastic in all regards. I don't think we have to
defend ourselves to anybody. And let the results speak as they may, and that's
really what football's all about anyway. But things are going to swing back and
forth, and that's just how it works." ~ Kirk Ferentz
The game in the desert with Arizona in Tucson in Week 3. Arizona coach Mike Stoops has yet to win a game vs. a FBS program during his tenure in Tucson during Week 3. As Coach Ferentz mentioned, he has been to Tucson twice as an assistant at Iowa in the 1980s. By the way, Iowa picked up important wins each time.
"Ohio State has done a tremendous job the last five years, and, really, since I
go back to 1981, ever since I've been really paying attention to the Big
Ten. And I know there's more than 13 years prior to that."
"But they've traditionally been an outstanding program. And one thing for sure, if
you're going to try to win a Big Ten Championship, you're going to have to find
a way to compete with them and beat them. And not many people have had
much luck doing that." ~ Kirk Ferentz
Coach Ferentz recapped the exciting 2009 season, which Iowa nearly missed out of the gate vs. Northern Iowa. But, they pulled out the win and won nine straight, until QB Stanzi's injury stalled Iowa (2 losses). The Hawkeyes pulled out a very good BCS win at Miami in the Orange Bowl over the ACC champion, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.
Iowa kicks off the 2010 College Football Season on September 4Th vs. Eastern Illinois, an FCS program out of the OVC.