Inside The LockerRoom: Media Day Special

The Hawkeyes under Coach Ferentz can never seem to enter Media Day without some sort of dark cloud hanging over their head. That has not stopped the high expectations or determination among the team, though. In fact, I did not hit any home runs with tidbits from Media Day, but I did find a lot of interesting details on this upcoming season.

A football player can never speak highly enough about their comfort level. The players were raving about their switch to Nike. In fact, many players even made sure they had their gloves on when getting photos taken to show off their new equipment. While, this may not effect the win-loss record, this is giving players more reason to be happy in a Hawkeye uniform.

Benny Sapp has not given up on a return to a Hawkeye uniform, and neither have many of his teammates. While players want to focus on this season, the consensus thought among the team was that Benny should still be on the team. I believe this distraction will quickly vanish, but it did seem unfortunate that there wasn't something that could have been worked out between Benny and Coach Ferentz. will have the majority of all photos taken at Media Day available early next week. Keep an eye out for the photo used in this story of Bob Sanders flexing at 2001 Media Day and the one we have of him for 2002. Bob has managed to even get bigger to add to the fact he is the fastest straight ahead runner on the team. As the team piles up victories, how many ESPN highlights will we be seeing of the Erie Assassin this fall?

Ben Sobieski stood at 6'6 325 at Media Day, bigger than all the OL, even Robert Gallery. Ben has been hoping for the past three Media Days that his health is finally 100 per cent. However, this Media Day it seemed more possible due to the intensity of the work-outs he has had with Coach Doyle. Ben may be listed as a second string RT at the moment, but do not rule out the possiblity of him moving inside to RG.

An interesting scenario to how the linebackers will be positioned in the future was discussed between a good source and I at Media Day. The staff has no reservations on just exactly how talented Edmond Miles is, and it will be hard to keep him off the field next year. What that also means is that the WILL position behind Kevin Worthy might suit him the best. Where will that leave Chad Greenway? Currently, there is not much young depth at the LEO spot behind Grant Steen and George Lewis. Chad has a great frame to play the outside linebacker position to go along with his physical play and overall great speed. The Hawks could be looking at their best LB group in school history if all the pieces fall in place for Greenway, Abdul Hodge, and Miles.

Add that fact to the possible defensive line of Matt Roth, Fabian Dodd, Steve Burch, and Jonathan Babineaux in 2004 and the Hawks could be looking at a very good defense. Do not think Norm Parker is in a hurry to leave Iowa as he is potentially facing the best defense group he may coach during his tenure. There is a lot of excitement at the present. It would be hard to find a bigger smile than those dispayed by any of the Hawk defensive coaches when discussing the future.

Last year, Jeff Smoker was the most hated QB among defensive players, and that did not change this year. Smoker has the reputation of being a bit cocky on the field, which is understandable with a WR like Charles Rodgers. The Hawks will have a target on his head this year at Kinnick Stadium. However, the joy that would be created by a Smoker sack would not begin to compare to the smile on the face of the Hawk who gets the first sack on Jon Beutjer. That is still a year away, but is already a date circled on the calendar of many of his former teammates.

Like I stated above, will have many Media Day photos available early next week. We realize that more importance was placed by others on Media Day, but we thought it more crucial to cover the main aspects. We will still have some Media Day coverage coming your way!

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