Returning Stats for 2011

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Iowa had a very senior heavy roster in 2010. There were also a handful of players that left the program (mostly running backs) and 1 junior who left for the NFL (Tyler Sash). As a result, there is a large amount of production that will need to be replaced by younger players in 2011 if the team wants to have a similar or more successful year.

What is interesting to me, is how the team was hit evenly across the board. Pretty much every major offensive and defensive statistic had about 60% of its volume produce by players who are no longer on the team. The notable exception is passing yards in which Ricky Stanzi had 3004 of the 3049 yards in 2010.

StatReturning
Starts42.3
Passing Yards1.5
Receiving Yards39.4
Rushing Yards38.3
Interceptions47.4
Tackles48.3
Tackles For Loss39.5
Sacks36.4

(Side note/nerd alert: I've implemented a new way to display charts on this site. Previously I was placing a chunk of javascript directly into a post to generate a chart. The new and improved method has an HTML table with all the data for chart in the post and a chunk of javascript at the bottom of the page which converts the table into a chart. The main advantage--besides a quicker and easier way for me to make charts--to this method is that people reading this blog through an RSS reader or people who don't have javascript turned on will now see a nice little table with the data.)

Despite the large number of losses on defense (almost the entire defensive line, a handful of linebackers, and both safeties) there is actually a fair amount returning. The returning tackles and interceptions are largely from Iowa's two corner backs: Micah Hyde and Shaun Prater. The two combined for 150 tackles and 8 interceptions last year. The defense also returns James Morris, who in really didn't start playing a lot until the latter part of the year but was still 4th on the team in tackles with 70.

Not accounted for in the chart above was some of the special teams stats. The most glaring place that needs some attention is on punt returns. 0% of punt return yardage returns as Sandeman, Chaney, and O'Meara were all seniors last year. The other area of concern is punting. Donahue handled the vast majority of punts last year and accounted for 2408 of the 2440 punting yards last year (Eric Guthrie had one punt for 32 yards). The best returning spot on special teams is with kicker Mike Meyer who handled all of Iowa's field goals last year and made 14 of 17.
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