Post PU: Kirk Ferentz Q&A

Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz met with the media after his team suffered a 31-6 loss at Purdue. He was asked about the play of his offense, he gave an injury report and what Iowa has to play for the rest of the year, plus more...

It was a disappointing loss for our team. Purdue outplayed us in every aera, like in 2003. Not the same as, but very similar in a lot of regards. They basically outplayed us. We had our opportunities, like our Indiana game. We came out of halftime thinking that we had a shot, but we were unable to do much in that third quarter. We had great field position two times and come out of it with six points. They scored touchowns and we scored field goals. That was the story of the game Q: Was this a step backwards?

Kirk Ferentz: It was disappointing. We didn't play well. We played very well last week. We have to play at the level we played at last week. Consistency has been a problem for us all year. It's fair to say it wasn't a step forward. The challenge for us now is big picture, see what we can do in four weeks and more importantly the next seven days

Q: Was Purdue's offensive success more a problem with your defense, or the offense not doing much and them being on the field a lot?

Ferentz: I felt we were playing good defense up until the second half. That was reminiscent of the Penn State game where they wore us down; we were on the field too long. We had more first downs today than at Penn State, but not being able to mount some drives and get points, that took its toll on our defense. They had their way in the fourth quarter.

Q: Purdue is a veteran group, whereas you are very young on offense.

Ferentz: That showed today. It was the same group we played a year ago, and they looked more mature and determined. They had it going today; it looked like a good football team. They were crisp, they did a nice job and took advantage of some certain areas. To their credit, they played a great game. We didn't look like we belonged on the same field with them in the second half. We are a little younger at certain spots than we want to be and thinner. That is football. That at times showed, that is one thing about youth, it showed up on special teams and offense. They caught us in some tough match ups on defense. We will keep working away and hopefully be a better team next Saturday

Q: What was wrong with Kenny Iwebema, and Albert Young?

Ferentz: I think that Kenny had a concussion. We held him out in the second half. We had two elbows. I think we lead the big ten in elbows and concussion. Tillison and Edds both suffered elbow injuries. Albert had a contusion on his knee, nothing of concern. Hopefully that is the case.

Q: Jake made some nice throws, but his numbers were not spectacular today. Did you guys focus on the passing game heading into today?

Ferentz: I think part of that is the way the game went. They put us in some tough situations. Even in the first half, we were not in synch. The first play, when we had a clean read, clean throw and couldn't convert it. It got a little stickier as the game went on. They did a very nice job defensively. We didn't handle third downs well. Like our whole offense, Jake is part of that; we didn't look as good today as we did a week ago. That is something we have to work through.

Q: You still have a chance to go to a bowl. Do you think about that?

Ferentz: Believe it or not, I am. We don't talk about it much, but we do address it at times. The reality is that we can still finish with seven wins. But the reality is that there will be no routine wins or plays for us. What we have to do is focus on improving this coming week, like we have every week. If we can get this next one, that would make it easier for us. That is what we need to concern ourselves with. We have four games left, plenty to play for, that will be our challenge starting tomorrow.

Q: How tough is Dorien Bryant to defend?

Ferentz: He is a very gifted player, very talented and fast. To me, the key is if you can't disrupt him a little bit, or take him out of what he likes to do; it will be a tough match up. Not the same as Hardy, but a tough challenge. He got free on us a few times today. For one guy to handle him, that is asking a lot.

Q: Did you feel fortunate to just be down 14-3 at the half?

Ferentz: We squandered some field position in the second quarter. 14-3 at half, we felt like we could do something with it. Bottom line, we had it on the 50, on their 36 and we came away with one field goal. They moved it to 21-6. The problem at that point was we were scoring field goals, and they were scoring touchdowns and that is a big difference for us. In that third quarter, for us not to capitalize when we had it on the 50 and inside their 40, that was not a good sign. That wasn't going to be a good outcome

Q: Did you ever think about a quarterback change?

Ferentz: I never did today at all. I never did at all. We were happing at some point we would start to move through things and we were not able to do it.

NOTE: Cedric Everson did not dress for the first time this season. When asked about it in his postgame press conference, coach Kirk Ferentz said that the true freshman "came up short in a few areas." When Ferentz was asked if those areas were on or off of the field, the coach said that the issue was between him and the cornerback.

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