Ferentz: Iowa schedule ‘measures up with anybody’

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The Hawkeyes’ Kirk Ferentz is the longest-tenured coach in college football, but he showed he’s still got his dry sense of humor when talking about the 2017 opener against Wyoming during Big Ten Media Days earlier this week.

“I’m trying to figure out who scheduled that game, actually,” Ferentz said. “Wyoming was struggling a little bit years ago. And coach Bohl’s done an unbelievable job, no big surprise. They have an excellent football team. They were division champs, and we expect a real tough battle in our first contest. We’re going to need to be ready.”

Ferentz also discussed the Cy-Hawk series with Iowa State and his belief that Iowa’s schedule stacks up with any program in the FBS.

“I think that game is really good for our state and good for football in Iowa, so I don’t see us discontinuing that series,” Ferentz said. “I don’t want to speak for Gary (Barta, Iowa athletic director), but I think that’s really important for all of us.”

In addition to Wyoming, the Hawkeyes play non-Power 5 North Texas this year, Northern Iowa and Northern Illinois in 2018 and Miami of Ohio and Middle Tennessee State in 2019.

“You know when you play 10 Power 5 games a year, I think that measures up with anybody in the country,” Ferentz said. “There’s a reason why nobody else, or very few conferences do that. There’s a real good reason, you know it hurts you a little bit — well, it doesn’t hurt — but it makes the challenge nationally a little bit tougher. We can schedule 12 of them if we want, but I’d like to hang around for a couple more years to coach. I don’t want to get run out on a rail, I’m not a masochist.”

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