Today we find ourselves just 100 days short of our favorite time of year. Oh I know, today in fact it finally feels like the late Spring/early summer days that we have been waiting on. Yet soon enough it will go from ‘nice’ to ‘too damn hot’ and we will all be longing for crisp Fall afternoons, marching bands, fight songs, chicken wings, and the annual thrashing of hapless schools like Illinois.
Yes, there are plenty of questions to be asked between now and September 2nd. They are:
- Who will Drew Tate throw the ball to?
- Who will step forward to replace the All American linebackers who will now meet twice yearly with the Pack and Vikings?
- Who will replace the four year starters at cornerback?
- The d-line finally found its game late last year – will they emerge now as the dominant, game changing line like we enjoyed with Roth and Babs?
- Just how many yards will Albert Young rush for now that the starting job is all his? 1500? 1750? 2000?
I don’t profess to have all the answers, but let’s give it a shot anyway. First, with a healthy does of Young running the ball, and exceptional pass catching tight ends in Chandler and Moeaki, linebackers and safeties will have to pay attention to the middle of the field, leaving our soon-to-emerge wide receivers the (relative) easiness of single coverage.
We knew a year ago that the tackle machines behind the line would be moving to the NFL in 2006. It was a point of emphasis in the latest incoming class, and these young guns will be anchored by senior Edmond Miles.
Eh, even though we had four year starters at corner and one of them came within one of Kinnick’s interception record, we still gave up way too many passing yards the past couple years. You get the feeling that the next crew, led by Adam Shada, will do a better job at shutting down the passing game.
Football is a simple game, really. It starts with the dline. They must both slow down the running game and put pressure on the QB to disrupt the passing game. Our dline took about 10 games to figure that out last year, yet figure it out they did. With a year of games under the belt, another year of Chris Doyle’s strength program, a year of coaching under Ferentz, look for them to emerge into something special this year.
Young – he has the combination of quickness and breakaway speed that we have not seen recently in Iowa City. When defenses get tired chasing him around they will get hammered by 225 lb. Shonn Greene or 245 lb. bulldozer Kalvin Bailey. The running back horror of 2004 is now a distant memory!
As always, the NYC Hawkeyes will spend their Saturday afternoons at Blondies West. http://blondiessports.com/
212 West 79th, Broadway/Amsterdam. (212) 362-4360
1 Train to 79th Street.
The 2006 Iowa Football Schedule – i.e. nothing short of your own wedding should be scheduled on these afternoons:
September 2nd – Iowa v. Montana (Varsity Club Day)
September 9th – Iowa @ Syracuse, 12:05 PM (NYC Hawks Head North Day)*
September 16th – Iowa v. Iowa State (Vengeance Is Sweet Day)
September 23rd - Iowa @ Illinois
September 30th – Iowa v. Ohio State, 8:00 PM, ABC or ESPN
October 7th – Iowa v. Purdue (Homecoming), 12:05 PM
October 14th – Iowa @ Indiana
October 21st – Iowa @ Michigan
October 28th – Iowa v. Northern Illinois (‘Bye’ Week)
November 4th – Iowa v. Northwestern (Family Weekend)
November 11th – Iowa v. Wisconsin (Senior Day)
November 18th – Iowa @ Minnesota (Kinnick North Day)
*ticket/tailgate packages will go on sale very soon.
January 1st, 2007 – Fiesta and Rose Bowls
January 2nd, 2007 – Orange Bowl
January 3rd, 2007 – Sugar Bowl
January 8th 2007 - ‘+1’ National Title Game
Find yourself staring out the widow, wishing you could be walking through the Park, perhaps the Union Square market, or lounging around on your rooftop? Nothing kills the will to work like a beautiful summer day. So, as you are not really working, let me provide you the following Hawkeye football links to help pass the time until 5:00 pm.
Kinnick Stadium Renovation Site: Ahead of schedule and still right on budget.
Kinnick Cam – Press box:
College Football News Iowa Preview:
(They keep adding more previews every day, but have not gotten to the Hawks yet. Stay tuned).
ESPN’s Ivan Maisel Post Spring Top 25: Hawks 10th
Hawk Central Football Page:
Official Iowa Football Page:
2006 Iowa Spring Prospectus:
Iowa Fight Song: If you are spotted NOT singing the Iowa Fight Song after a Hawkeye score, you could be kicked out of the bar:
Iowa Alumni Association ‘Virtual Pub’: Can’t find the drink you want in the office vending machine? Check into the Virtual Pub.
The Iowa Alumni Association Home Page: The best years of our life were in Iowa City? Keep the connection through the Alumni Association.
I hope you all have an enjoyable, safe, and healthy summer. Keep an eye out for Matt’s emails - they will include new events as the summer goes along. Not much longer until we are all together again, cheering the Hawks onto yet another January bowl game somewhere much warmer than NYC!