Another Tuesday, another Kirk Ferentz press conference. There were way too many questions about the Iowa-Iowa State rivalry that were all answered in typical Ferentz fashion. Hawkeyesports.com as always provides you with the full transcript of the presser, but all the important stuff is below.
Captains: Same as last week - Stanzi, Vandervelde, Clayborn, and Klug
Injuries: First of all, Stanzi is fine. So there's nothing to worry about there. Prater (hamstring), Murray (hip flexor), Tarpinian (hand), and Gettis (ankle) all have a shot at getting back in this week. Josh Koeppel was cleared to play last week, but Ferentz held him out. He will be ready to play on Saturday if needed (or in mop-up duty).
PAKI: Paki O'Meara earned the Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week for his blocked punt returned for a touchdown. Ferentz is happy for him, as am I. Paki has definitely put in his dues over the years so it's nice to see him earn some recognition.
Seriously please stop asking about Wegher: Enough already.
Hampton and Robinson: Hampton will get his share of carries on Saturday, but Ferentz hasn't figured out how he plans on splitting the load. Personally I believe Robinson earned the right to start based on his performance against EIU, but hope they do an every-other series thing like last year until one of them (I think it'll be Hampton) separates himself.
MacMillan and Nielsen: Two players that Ferentz was particularly pleased with after watching the film were first time starters Nolan MacMillan and Tyler Nielsen. I didn't notice MacMillan a lot from my seats 78 rows up, which for an offensive lineman is probably a good thing. I did think Nielsen played excellent, especially making plays on the edges.
The D-Line is ready: Ferentz said that he wouldn't need to say much to motivate the defensive line to play better than last year's game against ISU. A game in which Iowa's defense gave up 190 rushing yards and the Cyclone's offensive line much man-handled Clayborn and Co. Don't expect that to happen again. The defensive has been watching film and will be out to prove that they are the best line in the country.
Fluff: There were the questions about Rhoads, about the rivalry, at Arnaud, etc... They all elicited the typical "well-coached" and "tough game" type of responses.
Koeppel on NBC
In case you missed it, Josh Koeppel was on NBC to discuss the moped accident he was in last week that's video has gone semi-viral. Here is the video from his Today Show appearance that took place yesterday: