Hawk Talk Daily: Random Thoughts

Dec. 2, 2013

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Random thoughts on the Sunday morning of one heck of a college football and college basketball weekend…

We often save the best for last…like this story about this week’s Kid Captain: HERE. And Iowa’s big win at Big Red on Black and Gold Friday, the last day of the 2013 regular season for Kirk Ferentz’s squad.


I “tweeted” this Friday to followers of the UI Athletics Department’s official Twitter page HERE: Three trophy game victories…all on road. That speaks loudest about how far this team has come in a year. At Iowa State, at Minnesota, and at Nebraska. Maybe outside the Midwest, these games don’t resonate, but they do for the participants, and coming home with hardware isn’t easy.

I’ve always enjoyed Kirk’s sense of humor and it was on display again, briefly, postgame Friday. Rick Brown of the Des Moines Register makes mention of that and the 4-and-8-to-8-and-4-turnabout in this: HERE.

What can I say about our linebackers that hasn’t already been said or said better? Ditto for James Morris, the student-athlete? We’re going to miss them, so let’s enjoy them in a big way one more time. If you haven’t enjoyed this yet, enjoy it now: HERE

Remember C.J. Feidorowicz the freshman phenomenon? The Hawkeye Radio Network’s Ed Podolak raved about the big guy’s blocking on Weisman’s 12-yard touchdown run that was ruled an 11 -yard run that set up his 1-yard touchdown scamper. Our senior tight end has developed into the player our coaching staff had expected and will likely have the opportunity to play on Sundays…after, of course, a victory on New Year’s Day 2014.

I laughed out loud when ABC’s Ron Gilmore offered this on Weisman: “He takes a lickin’, but just keeps on tickin'” after the replayed showed the Hawkeyes’ hard-hitting junior breaking four tackles on the 11-yarder. Gilmore then followed up with this: “I’d rather be the hammer than the nail.”

Here’s a link to our take on the Hy-Vee Heroes Game: HERE.

Here’s a link to some video: HERE.

Here’s a link to the statistical summary for the game: HERE. And the season to date: HERE.

Here’s a link to the final regular season standings: HERE.

Don’t be surprised if later this morning your Iowa Hawkeyes become your nationally ranked Iowa Hawkeyes. It is nice to have a number next to “Iowa” when ESPN scrolls through the scores of the Top 25 teams for college football, men’s hoops, and women’s hoops.

We won’t know who or where we are playing until late afternoon/early evening Sunday, Dec. 8. We’ll be prepared because, under Ferentz, we always have been — his teams are 3-2 against SEC teams in bowl games with victories over LSU, Florida, and South Carolina.

Here’s a link to what we know about bowl game tickets: HERE.

We are stuck in that week where we tread water before watching all the college football dominoes fall and, on Sunday, learn where the Hawkeyes will be travelling for the bowl game. Here’s a link to some basic bowl game ticket information: HERE. And here’s a look back at a little black and gold recent bowl game history, compliments of Mike Hlas of the Cedar Rapids Gazette: HERE.

We’re down to only hundreds of tickets for the final nonconference home games of Fran McCaffery’s squad, including Tuesday’s Big Ten-ACC Challenge game with Notre Dame. The same can be said for all but one — Iowa’s date with Northwestern — of the Hawkeyes’ 2014 home games against Big Ten rivals. You can purchase your tickets online or call us tomorrow at 1-800 IA-HAWKS.

My interest was piqued by the headline. My full attention was captured by the first paragraph: HERE.

I think we witnessed the value of a deep and talented bench Thanksgiving night when Fran’s squad fought back from a double-digit deficit to defeat Xavier in overtime in its opening game at the Battle 4 Atlantis. Here’s our report from that game: HERE. I would suggest you look at the box score and the minutes played. You will notice that both of the teams were deep and talented, and I would guess that each head coach would tell you that is not a luxury, but a requirement of a team that wants to be dancing in March.

It is fun to watch the development of Gabriel Olaseni into a force on the basketball court. Check out his numbers from the free throw line against Xavier. Oh, yeah, four blocks and 11 rebounds, too.

How good are our basketball teams? In the case of Bluder’s Bunch, good enough to roll to three straight wins in Cancun. You can read about the third HERE. With respect to Fran’s squad, 2-of-3 in the Bahamas after a tough loss last night to Villanova.

It is fun to watch the development of Gabriel Olaseni into a force on the basketball court. Check out his numbers from the free throw line against Xavier. Oh, yeah, four blocks and 11 rebounds, too.

And Fran’s squad is good enough to make it onto the e-page of the newspaper with the world’s greatest one-page sports section: HERE.

Speaking of the Wall Street Journal, I wonder how they managed to get this story on Mrs. Saban? Quite the scoop for the One Page Wonder: HERE.

This is why I love college football No. 1: I have to give credit to Michigan coach Brady Hoke. It takes a lot of hutzpah to go for a game-winning two-point conversion on your home field with 30 seconds left against your rival that you were a significant underdog.

This is why I love college football No. 2: You have to give credit to Penn State’s Bill O’Brien, too. I can’t imagine too many folks had a “W” penciled in for Penn State yesterday at Madison.

This is why I love college football No. 3: Do you think there are a few Alabama fans saying “What the heck just happened” this morning?

Lastly, it’s Iowa versus Iowa State today on the mat for the Gable. You can get up to speed on the Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series match HERE. You can read about the not-so-traveling trophy HERE. What I do know about the Gable is this: It is a heavy piece of beautiful black marble.