“I’m not really interested in talking much about Saturday,” Spencer Petras established at Tuesday’s media session. “Our focus is on Iowa State. But we are just fired up to improve and to beat the Cyclones on Saturday.”
This comes after the offense was booed off the field at Kinnick Stadium in a seven-point performance. Against an FCS opponent. And the seven points came on a long field goal and two safeties. Petras wasn’t interested in talking about Saturday’s opener against South Dakota State, but Twitter certainly was.
How much time did the Hawkeyes spend dwelling on the 160-yard performance? Arland Bruce IV says not long.
“24-hour rule. Get out of the game and then evalualate what we did good what we did bad,” said Bruce, who leads the Hawkeyes in targets and yards. “I think we just flush that from there and get ready for our next opponent. It is a long season. We probably have 12 to 13 games left. There is nothing we can do about the past.”
The answer to improving the offense? Starting lineman Mason Richman says “don’t try and be a hero.”
I think the biggest thing [is] just everybody doing their 1/11th — no one’s out there trying to be Superman,” Richman said. “When one guy is off on offense it’s pretty hard to execute or play the way we want to.”
For head coach Kirk Ferentz the most frustrating thing was Petras’ interception at the end of the first half, and Leshon Williams’ fumble inside the 10-yard line that ended a promising drive in the third quarter.
“The most disappointing thing just overall — coming away minus-two in the turnover takeaway margin,” Ferentz said. “Set up a score for our opponent, and then also obviously knocked us out of an opportunity for a score. It’s not realistic to think that we’re going to be able to get away with that and be able to play like that moving forward.”
With moving parts on the offensive line, and top receivers still dealing with injuries it may be a matter of weeks before things click. But execution is going to be more critical against an Iowa State opponent that scored 42 points in their opener. Ferentz says that’s the plan for the remainder of game preparation.
“That is our task right now to clean some things up, do a better job and hopefully put a better game production-wise out there on the field.” Ferentz acknowledged.