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Choose Your Own Brian Ferentz Adventure!!!

We don’t even have to make stuff up; just look at past Iowa seasons.

Nebraska v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

As all true B1G fans already know, Iowa needs to score 325 points this year (i.e., 25 ppg...not THAT much) for Brian Ferentz to feel comfortable in his job.

Now, if this were a site dedicated to satire, I could whip up some outrageous scenarios that non-Iowa fans might find entertaining. (My favorite involves the defense refusing to register a safety late in the 4th of the bowl game as Iowa sits at 324 for the season.)

Fortunately, we don’t need to make shit up. Iowa already has several examples in their recent history that are comedic enough.

Please review each of the following and vote for the one that you would most like to see replicated this year!

Utter Garbage (2012)

Brian Ferentz’s first year at Iowa (as OL coach, not OC). Iowa was just a bad team, going 4-8/2-6. (Though Iowa did beat an NY6-bound Northern Illinois squad 18-17 in the season opener at Solider Field. Did Iowa kick four field goals that day? Of course they did. You’re only surprised it wasn’t six.) For the year, Iowa only scored 232 points (19.33 ppg), topping out at 31 in back-to-back weeks against Central Michigan (lost anyway, 32-31) and Minnesota (does Minnesota EVER beat Iowa?).

Among the lowlights (besides losing to Indiana, that is): a 9-6 loss to Iowa State and a 13-7 loss to Nebraska (though that was the year the Huskers were good enough to get curb-stomped by Wisconsin 70-31 in the B1G title game). The Hawks ended the season losing six straight games. The last victory? 19-16 over Michigan State. One TD in 60 minutes, plus two chances from the MSU 25 in OT? Checks out.

So Close! (2016)

In terms of pure hilarity, this might get my vote. Iowa scored 40-plus four times this year, including 49-35 over Purdue and a 40-10 whipping of a 9-2 Nebraska team to end the regular season. That left Iowa at 321 points scored for the season.

But in the Outback Bowl, the Hawks could only muster a FG, losing to Florida 30-3, falling one point short of 325.

Perhaps not coincidentally, OC Greg Davis was not asked to return to Iowa for the 2017 season, and Brian Ferentz ascended to the job.

I like the logic here for 2023: beat Greg Davis’ last season, or it’s YOUR last season, Brian.

Finish With a Flourish (2019)

Led by a third year starter (Nathan Stanley) at QB, Iowa went 9-3, but the offense wasn’t up to snuff, scoring only 286 points in 12 regular season games (23.83 ppg), 14 shy of the necessary pace. Some of this could be blamed on a tough schedule (3 points @ Michigan; 12 points vs. Penn State), but while Iowa feasted on MTSU to the tune of 48 points, and added 38 against Miami (OH), a 30-0 shutout of Rutgers was as good as it got for the Hawkeyes in conference play.

But then Iowa broke out a 49-24 whipping of USC in the Holiday Bowl and they ended the season with 335 points in 13 games, 10 more than necessary.

Why is this hilarious, you ask? Well, it would be enough to keep Brian Ferentz employed.

Technicalities!!! (2021)

Iowa went 10-4 and won the B1G West. They scored 328 points on the season, just three more than needed under Brian’s 2023 agreement. But they played 14 games, not 13, so they averaged less than 25 ppg. (Plus, 51 points came in a shellacking of Maryland.) And they only scored 20 points in the last two games (3 vs. Michigan in B1G Championship game, and 17 vs. Kentucky in Music City Bowl).

My understanding is that the target is 325 points, not 25 ppg, so if Brian maintained his job in this manner, you can imagine gnashing of teeth in Iowa City. Sign me up! Except, shit, it would mean Iowa won the B1G West.

Tough call.

Run It Back (2022)

While it might be more fun if Iowa just sucks, like they did in 2012, there was a lot of perverse joy in seeing one of the best defenses in recent B1G history get so little support. The 9-6 loss to Illinois was probably the B1G lowlight (unless it’s only scoring 33 against a terrible Northwestern team), but could it top the 10-7 loss to Iowa State? (It definitely can’t top the 7-3 win over South Dakota State. You beat the national champs, Iowa!!!)

230 points in 13 games just should not happen for 8-win teams. (Take away the 54-10 loss to Ohio State and Iowa’s defense allowed 119 points in 12 games, i.e., a point less than 10 ppg.) Maybe this isn’t everybody’s idea of a preferred outcome, but if what you want to see is for it to become blindingly obvious that Brian Ferentz is THE problem, then you probably want to see 2022 repeat itself again.


What is your preferred Brian Ferentz adventure?

This poll is closed

  • 22%
    Why mess with a good thing? 2022 all over again; Brian’s fate sealed before November even with a heroic defense
    (62 votes)
  • 9%
    Iowa trips over the bar with an extra game and a poor performance in the bowl game, but Brian hits his number (2021)
    (26 votes)
  • 23%
    The panic of Iowa fans as the offense saves his job with a bowl game explosion against a disinterested defense (2019)
    (67 votes)
  • 8%
    Iowa to fall a few points short because they shit the bed in a bowl game (2016)
    (23 votes)
  • 36%
    Screw drama; I want Iowa to be complete shit all year (2012)
    (103 votes)
281 votes total Vote Now