Feb. 12, 2013
- 2013 Iowa Baseball Steak Fry Video
- Read the February issue of Hawk Talk Monthly
- 2013 Iowa Baseball Media Guide
- Download your Iowa Hawkeye iPhone/iPad app!
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- Big Ten Network: Free Hawkeye Video
- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
TIFFIN, Iowa — Practice for the University of Iowa baseball team started more than two weeks ago, but Tuesday night marked the unofficial start to the 2013 season. The Hawkeyes held the fourth-annual Steak Fry at the Bella Sala Event Center in Tiffin, Iowa.
“We’re very excited about the season,” said UI head coach Jack Dahm to a crowd more than 400 Iowa baseball supporters. “We’ve got some tremendous young fellas, but more importantly, it’s about how they do in the community and how they handle themselves. That’s something we are very proud of.
“This is representative of the kind of support that we get at our games and at events like the Steak Fry and Leadoff Dinner.”
Gregg Bentler, the public address announcer at Duane Banks Field, emceed the event, where he introduced the Hawkeyes’ 33-player roster.
Dahm says the optimism surrounding the Iowa program is high entering the 2013 season.
“How can we keep that positive attitude, determination and grit as we go into the season? We’re going to have some ups and downs, but I believe this is a team that is going to take it on head on.”
UI head coach Jack Dahm
“You’re always optimistic heading into the season,” he said. “You saw the group standing in front of you. We’re starting to look a little bit different. Our team is physically getting bigger. This year’s team has something different about it. It has a focus and determination about them.
“Now here’s the challenge. How can we keep that positive attitude, determination and grit as we go into the season? We’re going to have some ups and downs, but I believe this is a team that is going to take it on head on.”
While the Hawkeyes will be young with nine of the 10 positional players (including the designated hitter) and two-thirds of the starting rotation being underclassmen, Dahm says the talent level and the experience from the 2012 season will pay off this season.
“It’s an extremely talented team, and a young team,” he said. “Last year, we had six freshmen in the lineup, and we’re going to be young again, but they’re a year more experienced. We’re going to be fun to watch.”
Dahm says the team’s 25-game home schedule that includes games against Big 12 foes Kansas and Kansas State along with the projected top-four Big Ten teams in Indiana, Nebraska, Michigan State and Minnesota sets up nicely for Iowa to make a run.
“We’ve played well at home, and we’d love to get all of you out to Duane Banks Field to help this team,” said Dahm. “At some point it’s going to click for this team, and I think we’re going to do some damage. It’s a belief I have when I am watching these guys.”
During the program portion of the event, former head coach Duane Banks presented Mike McQuillan and Phil Keppler with the Bob Oldis, Jr., Most Valuable Player Award from the 2012 season.
The Hawkeyes open the season Feb. 15-17 in Clarksville, Tenn., facing Austin Peay. The season-opener is set to begin at 3 p.m. (CT) Friday.