Why Josey Jewell is passing up on insuring his NFL future, why Bob Stoops hit the lottery and more
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So let’s get to it. Here is the Iowa Breakfast Club for Thursday, June 8.
Thanks, but no thanks
It didn’t take linebacker Josey Jewell long to decide to return to Iowa for his senior season. He spent more time debating whether to obtain insurance.
Some college football players with NFL futures take out insurance policies to protect themselves in case of a catastrophic or career-ending injury. Former LSU running back Leonard Fournette had two $10 million policies last season.
“I looked at it,” Jewell said. “I kind of understood what it’s all about and will probably go away from it maybe.”
Jewell, a Butkus Award finalist last season, was listed as the No. 5 inside linebacker for the 2018 draft by CBS Sports.com this spring.
After studying up on the insurance, Jewell doesn’t think it’s a worthwhile investment.
“There are a lot of things that go into it,” he said. “You look into it more, and guys didn’t receive insurance they thought maybe they were going to get in the first place. There are a lot of loopholes.”
Exiting stage left
Bob Stoops hit the lottery. He stepped down as the Oklahoma football coach on Wednesday.
The former isn’t the reason for the latter. It’s actually the other way around for the former Iowa defensive back.
It’s not often a coach leaves on his own terms. Stoops certainly is. He said, in a statement through Oklahoma, health or family issues aren’t driving him out of the sport. This was his decision.
There isn’t too much more for him to accomplish at Oklahoma. In 238 career games over 18 years, he won a national title, 10 Big 12 titles and various coach of the year awards. Anything else is just an additional chapter in his legacy.
It’s rare a legend exits and the succession plan makes this much sense or goes this smoothly. Oklahoma offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley replaces Stoops. Most national pundits pegged Riley as one of the next hot coaching candidates. Those in the profession hold him in high regard.
Odds were high the 33-year-old would be a head coach after this season. It turns out folks weren’t bullish enough about Riley’s head coaching prospects.
Don’t overlook how Stoops is leaving the cupboard fully stocked. Quarterback Baker Mayfield is a likely Heisman Trophy front-runner. Oklahoma is expected to be a preseason top 10 team. Charlie Strong must wish he had entered Texas with this kind of talent on both sides of the football.
To recap: Stoops left when he wanted to, the transition to Riley was met with applause and the program is in a great position.
It’s a heck of a trifecta. All three don’t typically happen upon a coach’s exit. It’s why Stoops hit the coaching lottery.
Exiting stage left, baseball edition
Iowa pitcher Josh Martsching is pulling a George Costanza. He’s going out on a high note.
Martsching announced his retirement from baseball on Twitter on Wednesday.
— Josh Martsching (@JoshMartsching) June 7, 2017
Martsching, a senior, capped his college career in style. He was as vital as any player to Iowa’s Big Ten Tournament championship run in May.
He worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the opener against Maryland, picked up the save in a win over regular-season champ Nebraska and his 5 ⅔ innings of relief in a semifinal win over Minnesota will be talked about for years to come in the Iowa clubhouse.
Martsching didn’t allow a run in seven innings in the conference tournament. He picked up 2 wins, recorded 1 save, allowed 2 hits and 2 walks, and struck out 4.
He picked up the save in Iowa’s 6-3 upset of No. 15 Houston in the NCAA Tournament.
It was a fine ending to a strong season from Iowa’s closer. Martsching went 5-1 with a 2.54 ERA with 8 saves and 46 strikeouts in 46 innings this season.
Exiting stage left, football edition
Iowa announced the departure of wide receiver Ronald Nash, kicker Mick Ellis and linebacker Angelo Garbutt on Wednesday. Land of 10 previously had reported on Garbutt’s departure.
Nash and Ellis will continue their educations at Iowa, while Garbutt said he plans to transfer to play elsewhere.
The departure of Nash, a walk-on, means only one returning wide receiver caught a pass last season. Kicker Keith Duncan passed Ellis on the depth chart last season.
None of the departed players were expected to play significant roles on the team this season.
Lots of links
- Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz is the longest-tenured coach in college football with Bob Stoops leaving Oklahoma.
- Iowa wide receiver Matt VandeBerg is healthy again and what he’s trying to do to stay that way.
- Defensive tackle Nathan Bazata still is working back from injuries that have hindered him since late last season.