Vandenberg, Iowa Seniors Prep for Final Game Friday

Nov. 20, 2012

  • Tuesday Interview with J. Vandenberg

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa senior quarterback James Vandenberg, along with 18 Hawkeye teammates, are preparing for their final game in an Iowa uniform. The Hawkeyes host No. 14 Nebraska Friday (11:07 a.m., ABC) in their final game of the season.

The Hawkeyes are facing a ranked opponent for the second straight week, with one less day to prepare, as the Hawkeyes and Cornhuskers meet on Black Friday for the second straight year in the Hy-Vee Heroes Game. Iowa’s first practice of the week came on Monday evening, which is usually a non-practice day for the Hawkeyes.

“The most difficult thing is the Monday part,” said Vandenberg, following practice on Tuesday. “You have one less day to prepare and recover physically before you have that first practice. I feel like we are over the hump in that regard; now we want to have two more good practices in our preparation.”

Through the eyes of a quarterback, Vandenberg knows Iowa has a tough challenge ahead.

They are a talented defense,” said Vandenberg. “They do a good job of limiting you in the run game and the pass game. Like a lot of other good teams, if they get you in third and long, they can do things to make your protections hard and get in some coverages that will make it hard on us. We certainly have to stay in front of the chains to give ourselves a chance on Friday.”

With a short week for preparation, Vandenberg and his senior teammates haven’t had too much time to think about Friday’s contest being the final game of the season.

“Certainly you take the one game approach,” said Vandenberg. “But when it comes down to it on Friday, there is going to be a lot of emotion. Having that last opportunity to play in front of 70,000 great fans; to play for coach Ferentz and play with 105 of my best friends. It’s not something you worry about now, or that it has hit me yet. Certainly on Friday there will be emotions involved.”