Posted by: marcmwm | July 10, 2009

Dolph says all is well

According to KXNO/’s Jon Miller, Iowa play-by-play voice Gary Dolphin was on WHO this morning and said Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz told him the running Jewel Hampton doesn’t need surgery and is expected to be good to go for UNI on Sept. 5.

So, is 10-2 back on the table, as some folks believe? Hey, it’s July. Think big.

Still have smallmouth
spine lodged in my thumb.



  1. You have a smallmouth spine in your thumb, ouch?

    I was hoping when you said that Dolph said all is well you meant he had went to the optometrist and had his eyes checked out. Then maybe he could call a game that people could remotely understand.

    He may bleed black and gold but he is not a strong play by play announcer in football or hoops.

  2. At football he seems to do OK, with lots of time between the plays to tell us what just went down.

    Basketball, however, he really struggles to keep up with the action, and fails to say what’s happening other than “pass” “shot” “rebound” etc.

  3. We have exactly one OL position nailed down at this point. No, I think 10 is 1-2 too many to assume.

  4. Right on, EP. But he’s got Eddie back to save his tail.:) (Amen)

    Dolph’s not that bad. He is a passionate Hawkeye fan, so I will cut him plenty of slack.

  5. What Bellanca said. But college football is a funny game, with many strange bounces and twists that defy even Phil Steele’s logic at times.

  6. Please, I wasn’t in the 10-2 crowd. Just throwing it out there. I haven’t put it to much thought, yet.

  7. If Calloway is really only gone for one game as some folks suggest AND if J. Ferentz is really given a shot to earn the starting spot early at C … then yeah … I think that the OL could be better early in the season than a lot of folks suppose … and that’s even with Vandervelde out. Of course, mind you, those are pretty big “ifs” … however, they’re not necessarily too far “out there” either. Obviously the situation would be a heck of a lot better if Vandervelde were good from the get-go and if Calloway weren’t facing suspension … but so it goes sometime.

    Frankly, the fact that Iowa doesn’t have to face UNI’s premo o-lineman may be a bigger hit to us than the fact that he only further guarantees that we pound them.

    With the current state of Iowa’s OL … if Iowa can still get by ISU and Arizona with victories … then I wouldn’t count out the possibility of a 10-2 regular season. Otherwise, I will say that 9-3 or 8-4 are definitely more likely outcomes.

  8. I had the ’06 team going 10-2 and I consider myself a “worst case scenario” type of guy so I know nothing but I have this team at 9-3. I’d have them at 11-1 if the B10 schedule were reversed. Bad year to have a good team, that said there isn’t an unbeatable team on the schedule.

    Marc, How does PSU typically fair early in the B10 season? If they are like Iowa has been (where they play their best late) then we may have a chance.

    Sidenote: I can’t wait to see how we defend Pryor, it will be interesting to say the least. The great thing about all the spreads is they rarely attack the middle.

  9. Marc,

    Back from the Lake sporting a deep dark Santro Pe tan and I have a little different out look on this early season stuff than others. I have been very out spoken about Iowa’s chances/record being linked to their attitude and effort. Going clear back to Hayden Fry Iowa has choked off many a season with high expectation and talent.

    This season, though expectation aren’t necessarily “high” things have indeed been expected. Honestly KF couldn’t pay for this kind of wake up calls. Especially if Hampton ends up playing & Calloway only misses one game. The problems haven’t been devastating and it should be motivating the team to work doubly hard as nothing is guaranteed. This team (as are all successful KF teams) will be defense, defense and more defense. This could become one of the most athletic dominant D’s we have ever fielded (yes there are a couple ???’s) and there is subsequent depth as well. The O will have to move chains a tick and surely with an above average QB several Rb options and some “decent” WR’s & TE’s that should be doable.
    We wont make the whole season without O-line injuries so to force us to build reliable depth, with solid options early is a good thing.

    The only team I expect to lose to is Ohio State because we always do. The next game I fear is ISU just because they are ISU and then MSU. If the O can move the ball good enuff to keep teams honest and the D fresh we will a lot of games. 9-3 should be expected, and anything less will be a disappointment. No I wont be mad, as I don’t take it nearly that serious, but a team with the history and number of NFL alumni that we have should always aspire to 9 plus wins. 8-4 is understandable from time to time, but 7-5 is a real let down. I’m not talking National Championships here, I’m talking 4-0/3-1 and 5-3/6-2 every year and if we aren’t clamoring for that then what’s the point.


  10. Also does anyone have any feeling on Jacody’s replacement. Will this free up Tarp or Johnson to play more in a different slot or will Bruce Davis’ be more prevalent. I hate to lose a young man like Jacody especially a “natural” inside Lber but Iowa really has at least 6 high quality Lbers and that doesn’t count Bruce Davis. Who if memory serves had a decent spring. In fact I thought I read where a few people mentioned he was like a magnet to the Ball in the spring scrimmage.


  11. It might be harder to play center in this offense than QB. Who’s our center? It’s certainly harder to put a functioning unit together than it is to put the backfield together. A lot of rookies, rehabs, and beer-exiled miscreants have to get straight and gel for us to be really good. It’s the toughest schedule in several years.

    Should be a fun year, though, with a couple big wins. I hope Norm makes the Michigan game his signature game, and it becomes a miserable night for the Rich-Rod spread. That’s possible: it’s a complex offense and I just don’t think a rookie QB is going to be that good. I think people are going to start comparing the Manzi to Brady by late October. I don’t think the D will be less physical than last year and a lot of fun stuff is possible if you have a lockdown corner (Spievey) and a 245 lb human (Edds) who can play robber against the spread enthusiasts. 7-5, 8-4. Up and down year.

  12. Great news that Jewel Hampton is OK despite being ‘stalked’ by the Des Moinies Ragister papparazzi ………..they are dangerous and strange, indeed.

    If the BIG question, really is, can Iowa replace Bruggeman at center, then, I think we have a GREAT chance to have another excellent line. Iowa has a former starter, Rafael Eubanks, a veteran, Josh Koeppel and the coach’s son JF, to handle the position.

    Consider me NOT WORRIED about the offensive line. Another strength……….heck, some magazines rank Iowa’s offensive line as TOP 5 in the nation.


  13. Bellanca,

    I agree with your thoughts on center. I do think we will have at least a “decent” one, but I also think the difference between a Bruggy and what we had in 2007 is the difference between “dominating” and so-so from series to series. A dominant O-line with a decent QB who can take care of the ball and our typically outstanding D is the recipe for an outstanding season, no matter who totes the ball. Inconsistent O-line play will be tough to stomach and it all starts at center in my mind. Though having experience or even dominance at other slots will certainly help offset an average center I suppose.


  14. Ferentz doesn’t have great teams unless the center is on his way to an NFL camp. Look it up.

    In this offense the center makes reads. It’s not about athletic ability alone. Raffy runs like a deer. They moved him to guard.

  15. Bellanca,

    Yeah I have never thought about it before but you are right. I have said all along that Rber and D-tackle weren’t as big an issue as center. I have to feel or maybe hope is a better word that we have someone who can play at a high level.

    I agree with some that James is a candidate but I can’t see KF rushing him into the lineup after his troubles. Not to even mention the fact that he missed some important growth time. It’s not impossible that Raffy can’t eventually “get it” but he didn’t seem to have it figured out in the spring.

    I’m curious about Koeppel or maybe an unknown stepping in.


  16. Alex Gibbs, who installed the zone scheme in Denver, and led the NFL in rushing (cumulatively) over 8 years, and installed it in Atlanta, and led the NFL in rushing (cumulatively) over three years, is the source for my remark. It’s not my idea. He thinks it’s easier to play QB as a rookie in the NFL than center (as a rookie) in a zone blocking scheme. He just shelved his rookies for two years and coached them up, before he allowed them onto the field.

    Maybe it’s easier to play center in college because the defenses aren’t half so deceptive, and thus the calls are easier. Don’t know.

    Anyway, these beer exiles hurt. It’s like a new class of injury, taking guys off the field, that other teams mostly don’t suffer. I just don’t see how it doesn’t hurt. Line play for us is so dependent on trust and continuity. And you have to practice the guys who are going to play on Saturday, not the “real” line that you expect to be off suspension later.

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