Week 1 didn’t go as expected for the Hawkeyes as they lost their season opener to Purdue. This week in practice they got back to the basics in preparation for their home opener against Northwestern.
“Yeah, I watched the tape, we did some good things,” said Iowa quarterback Spencer Petras. “We did some things that I wished that I could do better or wish that I could go back and change but kind of what I said early our focus now is on Northwestern, and beating them and having the best practice that we can have.”
“Traditionally, yeah, we have gotten better,” Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz said. “Our good teams at least have gotten better as the year goes on. If we’re going to be successful that’s paramount. We have to do that. There’s just not much wiggle room, as I alluded to earlier, right; it’s eight scheduled games plus one, so every game is really critical. Hopefully we’ll show improvement this week from last week.”
Although the Wildcats struggled last season, they opened this season with a 43-3 victory against Maryland. Northwestern’s quarterback is Peyton Ramsey, a grad transfer from Indiana who Ferentz calls a “winner.”
“I always was impressed with him at Indiana,” Ferentz said. “I was always impressed with the way he carried himself on the field, the way he operated. It’s not like he’s got a tremendous arm or this or that, just exceptional. The guy is just a good football player. He’s a coach’s son so maybe it’s got a little something to do with it, he’s got a little savvy. But he’s just an impressive football player.”
Iowa had a lot of new starters on the field against Purdue, and Ferentz said it was good to get them experience and ready to play.
“We had a lot of first-time players, but for the quarterback position I thought he did a lot of good things, a lot of things he’ll get better at,” Ferentz said. “But what I was really impressed with was his poise and his control out there and thought he did some good things. And then defensively same thing; we had some good moments. But also a lot of things to clean up there, too.”
“And especially for someone’s first start — the poise and the ability to lead when it wasn’t going perfect,” offensive lineman Coy Cronk said. “I was personally really impressed with, and I wouldn’t want anyone to go back and watch my first start. That wasn’t too beautiful, I think Spencer is heading in the right direction.”
Iowa is 1-3 in their last four meetings with Northwestern, but the Hawkeyes beat the Wildcats 20-0 last season.