Dec. 11, 2011
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa defensive coordinator Norm Parker announced Sunday that he will retire following Iowa’s appearance in the 2011 Insight Bowl in Tempe, Ariz. The Hawkeyes (7-5) will meet Oklahoma on Friday, Dec. 30 (9 p.m. CT, ESPN) at Arizona State’s Sun Devil Stadium.
In a prepared statement, Parker said the following: “I would like to announce that the 2011 Insight Bowl will be my last game as a football coach at Iowa. I would like to personally thank Gary Barta, Kirk Ferentz, the coaches, and players at Iowa, along with the fantastic fans. It has been a great time, one that myself and my entire family greatly appreciate. I would also like to thank the office staff, the equipment people, and a special thanks to the medical staff, as I used them enough. The entire Hawkeye community has been great.
My wife Linda, and all the members of our family, were very pleased to be members of the Hawkeye family. We truly enjoyed our time here. After 48 years of doing something I love, it is time to enjoy some time with the grandkids. Go Hawks!”
“Norm’s contributions to our team the past 13 years are deeply appreciated, as he has had a tremendous impact on our program,” said Iowa Head Football Coach Kirk Ferentz. “As I have said publicly on many occasions, Norm is a superb defensive coach and has served as a strong role model and mentor for all of our players and our entire staff.”
Parker is completing his 13th year as Iowa’s defensive coordinator. Following the 2011 season, Parker was named Assistant Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA). He will be honored at the AFCA national convention, January 8-11, in San Antonio, Tex. He was a finalist for the Frank Broyles Assistant Coach of the Year Award in 2004 and 2005.
Under Parker’s direction, Iowa has ranked among the top 10 nationally in rushing defense five times. Iowa has been in the top 10 in scoring defense three of the past four seasons. In 2010, Iowa was fifth nationally in total defense (332.1), sixth in rushing defense (101.5) and seventh in scoring defense (17.0).
Under Parker’s direction, the Iowa defense is regarded as one of the most physical, hard-hitting units in the Big Ten and the nation. The Hawkeyes have been bowl eligible in each of the last 11 seasons and have been ranked in the final top 10 of both major polls four times in the past 10 seasons.
Iowa has won 85 games over the past 10 seasons, including 50 Big Ten games. The Hawkeyes earned a share of the Big Ten title in both 2002 and 2004 and tied for second in 2009.
Parker began coaching on the collegiate level at Eastern Michigan in 1968 after beginning his coaching career in the high school ranks for three seasons. He also coached at Wake Forest, Minnesota, Illinois, East Carolina, Michigan State and Vanderbilt before becoming Iowa’s defensive coordinator under Ferentz.
AMERICA NEEDS FARMERS
The University of Iowa Athletics Department is working with the Iowa Farm Bureau on efforts to help consumers understand the challenges and opportunities today’s farmers embrace, and to do so under the banner, “America Needs Farmers,” the initiative undertaken by former UI football coach Hayden Fry during the Farm Crisis of the 1980s and embraced by the Hawkeyes’ current head coach Kirk Ferentz. To learn more, visit AmericaNeedsFarmers.org.