There’s nothing quite in the world like Iowa football under coach Kirk Ferentz. With a fan base full of optimism year in and year out, the Hawkeyes somehow always to manage to have a seven or an eight-win season. Sometimes they are overachievers, other times they disappoint with a loaded roster; moral of the story is they will still hit that same win mark. However, with as favorable of a schedule can be in the Big Ten, Iowa has a great shot at reaching the 10 win mark. Avoiding the likes of Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State even sets them up for an 11-win season and a possible BCS birth. The roster doesn’t scream national contender or rebuilder, but it is certainly capable of taking either path. In our predictions, we avoid the ladder.
An 11-win season for head coach Kirk Ferentz seems a bit unheard of for the perennial 8-4 or 7-5 Hawkeyes. Not to mention, the talent on this roster isn’t anything that is going to jump off the page, but as proven in the past, with the right schedule, Ferentz is capable of getting a double-digit win season out of his guys. With Nate Stanley returning at quarterback, along with two receivers and two tight ends that make up one of the best pass-catching units in the conference, 10 wins is indeed doable. The first four weeks of the season are going to tell the tale for the Hawkeyes with matchups against a solid Northern Illinois squad, a solid Iowa State squad, and a perennial tough matchup with Wisconsin. In this scenario, we see Iowa taking all three with an upset against Wisconsin. There secondary is a huge question mark right now, and Iowa’s best strength is their passing attack so it would not be surprising at all to see the Hawkeyes come out on top in that huge game. As far as the rest of their Big Ten play goes, the only matchup they will undoubtedly be an underdog in is the game against national contender Penn State. It would be miraculous for Ferentz group to pull off the upset in State College, but it would be relatively normal if they won out the rest of the way and finished the year at 11-1. With that said, if they don’t start the season 4-0 or 3-1, expect the usual seven to an eight-win season.
Record: Wins 11, Losses 1
Week 1: Iowa 35, Northern Illinois 23 (W)
Week 2: Iowa 24, Iowa State 14 (W)
Week 3: Iowa 42, Northern Iowa 9 (W)
Week 4: Iowa 28, Wisconsin 23 (W)
Week 5: Bye
Week 6: Iowa 30, Minnesota 21 (W)
Week 7: Iowa 27, Indiana 17 (W)
Week 8: Iowa 41, Maryland 20 (W)
Week 9: Iowa 17, Penn State 21 (L)
Week 10: Iowa 30, Purdue 20 (W)
Week 11: Iowa 27, Northwestern 17 (W)
Week 12: Iowa 38, Illinois 23 (W)
Week 13: Iowa 20, Nebraska 16 (W)