Hawkeye Hits will run each Tuesday and Friday morning on Hawkeye Insider and is a story meant for only premium members. It is pertinent and noteworthy information about the Iowa Hawkeyes gathered by our insiders over the past handful of days. Other premium information can also be found on the message board, The Swarm.
Hawkeye Hits will bring you the inside information you desire on the Hawkeye football team, the Hawkeye basketball team, any other sports, as well as recruiting nuggets.
The Tuesday October 13 edition begins NOW. Grab your coffee and donuts!
- Another big win last Saturday for Iowa as they topped Illinois at home 29-20. Big games from Jaleel Johnson, Josey Jewell, Jordan Canzeri, Jordan Walsh, and Jerminic Smith.
- Iowa is a mash unit right now. I do not expect LeShun Daniels and Tevaun Smith to travel to Northwestern. Drew Ott obviously won't. I think that Jake Duzey, Ike Boettger, and Boone Myers are more of a game-time decision, or at least a decision that will be made closer to Saturday.
- James Daniels played most of the second half at right tackle after the injury to Ike Boettger. He had his moments, both positive and negative, but it looked like he was really able to settle down after a series or two. Pass protection was obviously much more difficult for him on the edge than his run fits.
- Jordan Canzeri rattled off 43 (!) carries on Saturday. People are concerned because of the stigma around Iowa backs and the fact that Canzeri is pretty slight to begin with, being less than 200 pounds. I don't care what anyone says, you take the ball 43 times against anyone.. you're a tough guy. Northwestern is the toughest team on the schedule so you play your best if they're ready. You feed the horses against the best teams on the schedule. Expect more of the same for Canzeri on Saturday against the Wildcats before they head into the bye.
- Jerminic made a big leap from game one to game two as a starter. He's so smooth. I say that about him all the time. He gets open with ease. He goes up the ladder and snatches the ball with ease. It just looks so effortless for him. It looked like it wasn't a matter of he and C.J. Beathard figuring it out, it seemed like he stayed true to his route for longer and didn't give up on it as soon. This is Big Ten football, he's dealing with defensive backs being much more physical with him than he's accustomed to.
- I know people are gazing into the future already at the wideout position, and I agree, that's a pretty impressive group when Tevaun Smith returns. Jerminic is obviously earning his stay right now, to go with VandeBerg and Tevaun Smith is nice to think about for Hawkeye fans. That also does not include Jacob Hillyer and Riley McCarron. Jerminic isn't just going to automatically be on the field every play when Tevaun returns but he's definitely earned more snaps than what he was previously getting. It's probably a case where they can bring some of their 4-WR packages to game day.
- Northwestern will be without corner Matt Harris. Through the air may be how to attack the 'Cats on Saturday. Northwestern has a very good front seven, however Michigan plays a very similar brand of football as Iowa and they marched down the field a handful of times just smashing the ball downhill on their way to 38 points. Stanford tried to do that and they lost. Michigan tries to do that and they owned Pat Fitzgerald's defense. Iowa is similar in what they want to do but they also have a more reliable passing offense than Michigan at this point, at least vertically. It will be intereseting to see how they approach this.
- Defensively I just think Iowa needs to stop the run first and foremost. Justin Jackson is a very good back and quarterback Clayton Thorson is pretty elusive in his own right. The Wildcat offense is decent but a lot of it depends on Jackson's effectiveness as a running back.
- There wasn't a whole lot of recruiting to be done this past Saturday as it is tough for most recruits to make it in time for an 11 a.m. game. However, one 2017 prospect that did show up that you have to love if you're the Hawkeyes was four-star Mount Vernon (Iowa) offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs. At this point it would be a shocker to see him commit anywhere other than Iowa.
- One of their commits did go ahead and visit elsewhere, though. Omaha (Neb.) South tight end Noah Fant stayed nearby and was on the sidelines of the Nebraska home game in Lincoln. The Huskers lost to the Badgers but it had to be an exciting atmosphere to be in attendance for. Now, there does not seem to be anything for the Hawkeyes to be concerned about at the moment, but it's something that definitely bears watching moving forward. I still see Fant sticking with Iowa but this isn't some slam dunk with nobody in the lane. He still visited the Huskers for a reason.
- There's three home games left for Iowa. They host Maryland, Minnesota, and Purdue. They host the Gophers at night. That will be your big recruiting weekend this season.
- Iowa already hosted defensive back K.J. Sails on an official visit. They're in a good spot for him. I think they beat out Wisconsin for his services. However, they're doing the work necessary to not be left at the altar, just in case. Largo (Fla.) safety Brandon Drayton holds an offer from the Hawkeyes and he will take an official to Iowa for the Minnesota game weekend on November 14.