NEW YORK — For a team filled with inconsistency in a season fraught with the same up-and-down pattern, the Iowa football team surprisingly has a chance to make a dent on the team’s record book.
From coaching victories to touchdowns scored, interceptions to touchdowns thrown, several single-season and career marks have a chance to go down in the Hawkeyes’ Pinstripe Bowl matchup against Boston College (5:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. CT, ESPN) at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday.
First, coach Kirk Ferentz’s 142 wins at Iowa are just one shy of predecessor and College Football Hall of Fame coach Hayden Fry. Although that’s a major mark in program history, it’s not one that Ferentz is interesting in discussing as he ends his 19th season as Iowa’s coach.
“I just feel very fortunate,” Ferentz said. “I’ve been around great people in my 28 years here at Iowa, and the coaches have been fantastic that I’ve gotten to work with. The people at the university have been tremendous and then the people of the state are great. It’s a really unique place. I feel fortunate to be here at the bowl game and I feel even more fortunate to be here at the University of Iowa.”
If Iowa wins, Ferentz moves up on another list. Ferentz’s six bowl victories are tied for third with Fry and former Michigan coach Lloyd Carr in Big Ten history. The only Big Ten coaches with more bowl wins are Penn State’s Joe Paterno (10) and Wisconsin’s Barry Alvarez (nine).
Perhaps the most underrated Iowa record that could fall is career touchdowns scored. Running back Akrum Wadley has 34 touchdowns, just 2 behind record-holder Tavian Banks, who scored 36 from 1994-97.
Wadley, who has 2,784 career rushing yards, also needs 193 yards to tie Banks for fourth on the all-time rushing chart. Wadley is only the fourth running back in Iowa history with two 1,000-yard rushing seasons.
“Boy, what production he’s had,” Ferentz said. “I think the most impactful thing to me is for him to be a back-to-back 1,000-yard rusher, the first time we’ve had that since Fred Russell [2002-03]. So as good as all the numbers are, that one kind of grabbed me a little bit.”
Quarterback Nathan Stanley has 25 touchdown passes this season, tied for third-most in Iowa history and just two behind the single-season record. Chuck Long set the mark with 27 in 1985.
Cornerback Josh Jackson has 7 interceptions, one shy of tying Desmond King (2015), Lou King (1981) and Nile Kinnick (1939) for the single-season record. Jackson also has 25 passes defensed, just 3 away from the tying for the top mark nationally in the last 10 seasons. Houston’s William Jackson had 28 in 2015.
Wide receiver Matt VandeBerg will become the career record holder for most games played at Iowa when he steps on the field for at least one snap. VandeBerg is tied with Desmond King at 53 games played. VandeBerg also has 133 career catches to rank 10th all-time at the school. With 2 more catches, he’ll tie Ed Hinkel for ninth; with 6, VandeBerg will tie Tim Dwight for eighth.
Linebacker Josey Jewell ranks fifth in Iowa history with 426 career tackles. Nine more will tie Brad Quast for fourth.