You’ve got to hand it to Kirk Ferentz. He never loses that smile.
Even as he entered the Feller Club Room in Carver Hawkeye Arena for what was to be his 15th “Media Day” gathering with the assembled members of the statewide press.
Even after having his first losing season in six years and fourth in 14 years overall.
Even after losing the last six games of last year, leading fans to have more anxiety than enthusiasm going into this season.
No. Kirk Ferentz walked right into Iowa Football Media Day with that smile. That same soft-spoken, gentle greeting for the everyone that was waiting with a wide variety of questions.
You think last fall got this man down? You think he’s grown weary of answering those questions? His opening statement provided that answer.
“It’s great to get back on the field for us,” Ferentz said. “I think all coaches certainly that’s what they enjoy the most, and it’s great in that regard. We’ve had four practices now, and probably like most teams in a America we’ve got a lot of work to do. We realize that.
“I think we’ve had a positive summer. Certainly at the end of spring I felt like our team progressed. I thought we were a better team than we were back in November and now we’re back to it again and building up to it as we go.”
That seemed to be the theme of this year’s Iowa Football Media Day. While Ferentz took plenty of questions and provided answers for over half an hour on topics ranging from his three-man quarterback battle to the potential of having as many as five tight ends to choose from (including Mount Pleasant sophomore Henry Krieger-Coble), there still felt like plenty of questions need to be answered as the Hawkeyes prepare to hit the Kinnick Stadium gridiron for their opening game against Orange Bowl qualifier Northern Illinois and Heisman Trophy candidate quarterback Jordan Lynch on Aug. 31.