Since Deacon Hill has stepped in at quarterback in place of Cade McNamara, the results have been less than ideal statistically.
Among 114 qualifying FBS quarterbacks, the one who has the lowest completion percentage is Rutgers’ Gavin Wimsatt at 50.3%. Deacon Hill’s at 37.8%.
Overall, he’s completed two touchdowns to three interceptions. The team is 2-1 (3-1 if you count the game he finished against Michigan State) with Hill at the helm, but as the team sports the worst offense in America, it’s fair to wonder whether Hill will hold on to the job.
Joe Labas, a redshirt sophomore, has played in just one game for Iowa — the 2022 Music City Bowl in a spot start. Spencer Petras was out for the season and Alex Padilla had entered the transfer portal. Labas led the team to a 21-0 win over Kentucky, completing 14 of his 24 attempts for one touchdown and no interceptions.
Labas entered the season as QB3, behind Cade McNamara and Hill. Head coach Kirk Ferentz has been pretty consistent why Hill will remain the starter.
“I hate to say this in a negative way, but I think we all saw when Petras got knocked out, we saw why we were playing Petras,” Ferentz said ahead of the Minnesota game.
For context, Petras was injured early in the Nebraska game last year, and Padilla came in and committed a pair of turnovers in a 24-17 loss.
But Ferentz added more clarity as to why Hill and not Labas will be QB1 moving forward.
“You look at the body of work, believe it or not, we at least I think we know a little bit more about our guys because we see a lot more.” Ferentz said this past Tuesday.
“We’re looking with trying to grow guys that haven’t played very much and see how well they can move forward here and how quickly they can move forward.”
Hill will start this weekend against Northwestern at Wrigley Field as the team sits at 6-2 and in position to reach the Big Ten Championship Game.