The best way to start your day is right here at Landof10.com as we prepare you for everything you need to know about Iowa sports. We’ll share our Hawkeyes Wake-Up Call here with you at 8:30 a.m. (ET) Monday through Friday.
So let’s get to it. Here is your Wake-Up Call for Monday, Feb. 6.
The most telling part of the Ken O’Keefe hire
So how did Ken O’Keefe’s hiring go down? It started when his phone rang.
“Coach called me,” the new Iowa quarterback coach said.
Those three words matter. Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz reached out to O’Keefe.
Ferentz called someone he trusts. Ferentz called someone who knows his program. Ferentz called someone to ensure he’d pull a Sinatra — he’d go out his way.
Ferentz is on the back 9 of his coaching career. He knows what he wants out of his program and he’s not going to deviate from that. The fact he reached out to O’Keefe, who worked on the staff from 1999-2011, and wanted to go this route to fill the quarterback coach vacancy proves the Ferentz from the first 18 years will be the Ferentz Iowa fans will see going forward.
It’s not a surprise. This isn’t a bad move. Ferentz has won 135 games at Iowa. His way does produce positive results.
It’s just a reminder that for all the “new Kirk” talk the last few years, some things won’t change with the program. Ferentz is going to do things a certain way and that includes hiring people he is familiar with and who know what he wants.
“Nothing is different,” O’Keefe said.
He was referring to having to answer to Ferentz as an Iowa assistant. He might as well have been referring to the approach Ferentz is taking for his final chapters with the Hawkeyes.
The (almost) champion Hawkeye
It was right there. Atlanta was up 28-3 on New England in the third quarter. Jonathan Babineaux was all but fitted for his Super Bowl ring.
Then Tom Brady did Tom Brady things and showed why he’s the greatest quarterback in NFL history as the Patriots pulled off a 34-28 comeback win in overtime in Super Bowl LI on Sunday.
The loss is heartbreaking for the Falcons, and especially for Babineaux. The former Iowa defensive lineman is from Port Arthur, Texas. It’s about an hour from Houston. This was the ideal location for Babineaux to win a Super Bowl.
Instead of celebrating with family, he walked off the field likely wondering what the heck just happened.
It’s a question that will be asked around Atlanta a lot during the offseason.
What’s next for Nate Wieland?
Nate Wieland is officially a Hawkeye. So what’s his next task?
He must look at Ike Boettger and find a way to become him.
No, the 195-pound Iowa City High prospect likely won’t transform into a 300-pound offensive lineman. But if Wieland is to make an impact on the field he’ll need to do the same thing Boettger did — figure out how to transition from quarterback to a new home.
Boettger entered Iowa a quarterback who was told to put his hand down. He started at tight end. He bulked up so much he was moved to the offensive line. He’s started 18 games over the last two seasons.
Wieland, a 2-star recruit per 247Sports, is being told to switch sides of the ball. He’ll start out at linebacker and try to emulate what Boettger did by learning to play a new position.
Iowa likes bringing in quarterbacks and moving them around the field. It’s a strategy that’s worked in the past. Time will tell if it will work with Wieland.
Give him the title
By hitting 4 3-pointers in an 81-70 win against Nebraska, Jordan Bohannon set an Iowa men’s basketball record single season freshman record on Sunday. He’s drained 54 3-pointers this season, putting him two ahead of Matt Gatens’ mark from 2009.
Here is the thing: Bohannon has seven more games left in the regular season. He’s not just going to be bet Gatens’ mark, he’s going to obliterate it.
Bohannon is averaging 2.25 3-pointers per game. If his average holds up, Bohannon would 15-16 more 3-pointers. That doesn’t factor in the postseason or the chance he gets hot and has a few nights like Sunday.
Highlight of the weekend
Iowa signee A.J. Epenesa had one heck of a dunk on Friday night. Here’s video of what he did for Edwardsville High School (Ill.).
— AJ Epenesa (@ajepenesa24) February 4, 2017
That is vicious. It also displays the athleticism Epenesa, a 5-star prospect, will bring to Iowa’s defensive line.
Lots of links
- O’Keefe made one point clear in his introductory press conference. He’s here to follow the lead of offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz.
- Thomas Gilman’s crazy comeback was a wild way to cap Iowa wrestling’s win against Minnesota on Sunday.
- What Iowa men’s basketball coach Fran McCaffery said after the Nebraska win.