Kirk Ferentz: Yeah. I think we are...but again, he has missed a lot of practice time. Its like Brad Rogers working back in there. Last week was the first week he was fully engaged, so good luck finding a good spot to put him in a game like that. Now he is a couple weeks into it, so we will feel better.
Q: There is a bizarre rumor that won't go away about you reaching out to Mike Stoops.
Ferentz: You mean Dan McCarney is not available? What year was that one?
Q: Yeah, it won't go away, maybe you can address it so it will.
Ferentz: We have a former receiver and I was thinking about him coming back to be a staff member. I am not responding to that stuff.
Q: Were you aware of it?
Ferentz: Someone said that last week and i said the same thing about McCarney. That was the rumor a while back, too.
Q: Did Keenan practice last week? He was warming up in pregame.
Ferentz: Similar to what Canzeri went through before Indiana. He is in the final phases of being able to get out there. Today will eb the first day with us and not the trainers. He will be with both. I don't know if he will be good enough to play Big Ten football Saturday
Q: And Nardo?
Ferentz: He is further ahead. Keenan is the only one lagging behind now. Nardo and Hitchens didn't play the other day but hopefully they are closer. We held James out against Northwestern. The next week we were able to get him out there. The longer you can keep him from being under duress, the better chance you have. I think those guys are ready to go.
Q: Are your opponents wise to your no-huddle look?
Ferentz: We haven't been no huddle in a few weeks now.
Q: Is that why?
Ferentz: Nah, it just hasn't fit with what we are doing right now.
Q: Do you feel like the talent is there defensively and its just been breakdowns week to week?
Ferentz: It's like the offensive line last year; if we were healthy and could keep the same group together, we could improv weekly. Sometimes its two steps forward and one back. I still think that will happen. I am optimistic, I think we will get better.
Q: Is it a part of having two true sophomores at linebacker?
Ferentz: If you do the math...I am not here to make excuses, but the reality when Hodge and Greenway, the best LB duo at a tandem, their second year on campus they were special teams and learning, third year played well and did so in the fourth and fifth year...but we are on a different track here. These guys are on the AJ Edds track. If they are both healthy, we can move along. They are not there yet. Losing your most veteran guy does not help you (when Nielsen was injured) but that is football.
Q: What kind of season is Shaun Prater having
Ferentz: I think OK. He is playing well. We are not playing well enough on defense to be where we want to be. The reality is we gave up 22 points but it wasn't good enough to win. We did a lot of good things but not enough to win, the same thing on offense. We didn't do enough to win, got to the redzone and could not score.
Q: What will happen with the DL one year from now? What is the future like there?
Ferentz: I am looking at this week. Come back a year from now and I will give you an answer.