Growth at receiver, preparing to face a top punter and recalling last season’s loss to Purdue are among the topics in today’s Hawkeye 10@10, your daily dose of Hawkeye news and notes.
Appearing each weekday at 10 a.m. at hawkmania.com, here is today’s Hawkeye 10 @ 10:
1. Iowa running back Mark Weisman said he takes the Hawkeyes’ recent lack of success rushing the ball personally.
“It’s a matter of pride and I haven’t been able to get the yards that I need to get lately. I’ve got to get that fixed, play more physical,’’ Weisman said. “That’s part of it.’’
2. True freshman Reggie Spearman has seen additional snaps at linebacker and on special teams in recent weeks and coach Kirk Ferentz likes what he has seen.
“He’s growing and doing a good job on special teams and now we’re carving out a little something for him on that third-down package two weeks in a row now and he’s done a good job there, too,’’ Ferentz said. “We’re starting to bring him along.’’
3. Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz believes that talk of how adjustments impact second-half performance both by the Hawkeyes and their opponents is overblown.
“I think that adjustment stuff gets overplayed sometimes, just my personal opinion,’’ Ferentz said. “The bottom line is we’re not getting enough done in that second half. We didn’t enough done in the first half last week, either.’’
4. Iowa’s next win makes the Hawkeyes bowl eligible for the 11th time in the 15 years.
After missing out on that experience a year ago, it has been a long-term goal of the Hawkeyes this season.
“We didn’t get that done last year, so to do it now and have a chance to add to it before the end of the regular season would be big,’’ Iowa linebacker Christian Kirksey said. “It’s the next step in getting things back to normal around here.’’
5. Iowa has mixed and matched running backs in recent games, something coach Kirk Ferentz expects to continue.
“We’ll just play it a game at a time, try to do what’s best,’’ Ferentz said. “It’s a little tricky trying to get four guys in, but we have no problem with all four of them. We think they’re all pretty capable guys.’’
Jordan Canzeri provided Iowa with a spark in its loss to Wisconsin after starter Mark Weisman left with an injury.
“Jordan gave us a little bit of a change up in there and hit that one nice run and did a good job,’’ Ferentz said. “He’s been practicing really well.’’
6. The future for Purdue’s program can be seen in the playing time of its youngest players.
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The offensive has started underclassmen at all six skill positions during a single game this season, including five freshmen. Two of Purdue’s top three rushers this season are freshmen, Dalyn Dawkins and B.J. Knauf and four freshmen are among five underclassmen who rank among the Boilermakers’ top seven receivers.
7. True freshman DeAngelo Yancey has been a bright spot in a rather dreary season for Purdue.
The wide receiver had back-to-back 100-yard receiving games for Purdue against Northern Illinois and Nebraska, a first for the Boilermakers program since Keith Smith had four straight 100-yard games in 2009.
8. Purdue will honor the military this Saturday.
The Boilermakers will wear special red, white and blue “P’’ emblems on their helmets in place of the usual black logo the team has worn.
9 .Three Hawkeyes – James Morris, Jake Rudock and Brett Van Sloten – were named Thursday to the Capital One academic all-district six first team as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America.
The three are now eligible for consideration for academic all-American honors. The district award is the second for Morris and the first for Rudock and Van Sloten.
10. The National I-Club and Iowa Alumni Association will host a Hawkeye Huddle prior to Saturday’s game at Purdue.
The free event will run from 8-10 a.m. (CT) at the Four Points Sheraton, West Lafayette, and is open to the public. Cash refreshments, complimentary snacks, door prizes and appearances by Herky and the Iowa cheerleaders are part of the huddle events which typically precede Hawkeye road football games.