Iowa Head Coach Kirk Ferentz's Purdue Game Press Conference

Kirk Ferentz shares his thoughts on the Iowa football team for the week of the Purdue game.

Iowa is 10-0 looking to move to 11-0 as they take on the Purdue Boilermakers this week. Purdue has just one win in Big Ten play, over Nebraska, but have also competed in tight ball games against Michigan State and Northwestern.

Kirk Ferentz took the podium to discuss his thoughts entering the matchup.

ON SATURDAY'S ATMOSPHERE AT KINNICK...

"Saturday was an unbelievable crowd and a tremendous atmosphere. I've been here a long time and I'm not sure we've had a better atmosphere than that in Kinnick, so I just want to express my appreciation to the fans. Since the game, heard a lot of comments immediately afterwards through the next couple days. A lot of people were cognizant of that, and it was a lot of fun to be a part of that."

"To that point, too, when our team plays, really they play for each other, and what they don't want to do is let themselves down, let each other down, but I would include the fans in that, too. Any time you get in an environment like that or when you get on the road and our fans follow us, that brings a lot to our football team. It adds s a lot to what we're doing, and I know our players feel that way, also. They feel compelled to play their best, so we appreciate that."

ON INJURIES...

"Injury-wise, we held Akrum Wadley and Ike Boettger out of the game on Saturday. They were both cleared to play. Happy that we didnt' have to play them. I think that's probably better for them in the long run, and they're both working forward. I think they should be in good shape to play this week if called upon. We have a couple guys nicked up like you always do coming out of a ballgame, but I'm optimistic right now that everybody has a good chance to be ready to go."

ON PURDUE...

"Looking forward to Saturday against Purdue. I think the biggest thing with them is that they've settled in with a young quarterback who's a very good player. He's doing a good job, and I think you can see their team growing under his leadership. And if you look back, just last week, they played a heck of a football game against a very good Northwestern team on the road last Saturday. And you go back a couple weeks ago, they had a good victory over Nebraska. So they're doing a good job, and we certainly expect their best effort. It gets back to our preparation, being ready to go."

ON WHAT'S AT STAKE...

"As far as our football team, we're excited about the opportunity in front of us. Having an opportunity to go 7-0 in the Big Ten, which would be significant, 7-0 in Kinnick, which has only been done once before, that's important. And then the ot her thing is a chance to grab a share of the West Division Title, which to me those are tangible things that are out there for us, and that's really what we're focused on. But as much as anything right now, it's an opportunity to send our seniors off in a good fashion, and this has been a great class."

ON JOSEY JEWELL...

"To me it starts with his effort and commitment to being a very good football player. To me if you want to see Josey Jewell, turn on the second half of the bowl game, because that wasn't much fun. We were all there. It wasn't much fun to be involved in that thing. What do you play for at that point, and you're playing for pride, and if there's one guy on our defense that stood out, it was Josey Jewell. He was sprinting across the field. I have no idea how fast he is, but I'll tell you, he tries to get to the ball fast, and when he gets there, he has the defensive attitude you want. So to me, that's kind of like the first thought I have about Josey when I think about Josey performing. He's right in the middle of things. Being a middle linebacker is a key position. It's a leadership position just like playing free safety or center or quarterback, and he's doing a great job at that.

ON LESHUN DANIELS...

"That's why we named him starter. He's really done a good job. He's a good football player and a great kid. The way things unfolded maybe we can get to the point where we'll have them all at once. But Jordan has really done a great job. Akrum did a great job when he was called upon and if he's healthy we're confident that he can play well, and then Derrick Mitchell has done a really good job as our 3rd down back, not just touching the football but blocking also. He had a critical block the other night."

"The one thing I'd say about that whole group that's been the most impressive to me is just the way they've picked each other up, so if somebody goes down, the next guy grabs the rope and does a great job with it. We're really pleased with the entire group, but that's as good as LeShun's looked since he's been here."

ON BEING FLASHY...

"To me it's about winning the game in front of you, the game that's presented to you, the one that you're going to compete in. That's the most important stat there is. There are a lot of things we look at that are important, turnover-takeaway ratio, might not be flashy or sexy, but it's really critical to success, again, unless you've got the best players, then you can overcome being sloppy and all that kind of thing. But that's a big one. There are a lot of things that are important. I don't know how flashy we are. Steve told me the other day this is the first time we've scored 30 or more points in four straight games in Big Ten play, and we were 29 points the game before that, so to me that's a pretty significant accomplishment."

"I had no idea it took place. To me we're just kind of letting the season unfold and what have you, but the most important stat is winning games. That's ultimately the one that gets judged the most critically, and it's the goal we have every week. That's kind of what we've been focused on, and that's what we'll hopefully be focused on this week and the week after."

ON IKE BOETTGER...

"It's kind of like our running backs. I mean, Ike was really playing well, now Cole has jumped in there and done a great job. Cole has played more snaps than any of our three tackles which caught me by surprise a little bit when I looked at the numbers on Sunday. But it's a really healthy situation, not a play on words. Ike is still working his way back. I don't know if he's 100 percent right now. He's not quite there right now. When he is there, we'll have a great, great situation. We'll rotate the guys. I'm fine with that, just like we'll rotate backs. They've proven they can play and play well against anybody, so yeah, really happy about that."

ON PITCH COUNTS FOR DEFENSIVE PLAYERS...

"Yes and no (I am conscious) on some of the pitch counts for them. Yes, I'm aware of it. We keep an eye on everything, all the stats that way. But on the other side we've only got like, whatever it is, 10 days left, so suck it up. Suck it up. We'll rest later on. I don't believe in pitch counts. I told you that earlier. I think that's all bull crap. And Bert Blyleven would back me up on that. I think I heard him on the radio one time talking about that."


Hawkeye Insider Top Stories