Scott Dochterman/Land of 10
Iowa guard Sean Welsh has high praise for some young Hawkeyes linemen.

Which Iowa linemen Sean Welsh believes are ascending, Matt VandeBerg is back working out

The best way to start your day is right here at as we prepare you for everything you need to know about Iowa sports. We’ll share our Iowa Breakfast Club here with you at 7 a.m. (ET) Monday through Friday.

So let’s get to it. Here is the Iowa Breakfast Club for Wednesday, June 16.

Sizing up Iowa’s young offensive linemen

Senior guard Sean Welsh has a chance to become the next highly drafted Iowa offensive lineman next April. He should receive preseason All-American consideration, despite being strangely omitted from the All-Big Ten first team last season.

Either way, Welsh knows what he’s doing. He’s also a believer in one of the Iowa program’s tenets: Leaving the jersey in a better place. Part of that responsibility is watching over his younger teammates along the offensive line. Welsh has praise for several of the youngsters but one clearly sticks out.

“I think Ross Reynolds is going to be a great player. I really do,” Welsh said of the junior guard. “He’s already got the physical [aspects]. He’s one of the fastest linemen — including defensive and offensive — he’s one of the strongest. In terms of the physical, the strength and conditioning, I think he’s got it nailed down so far. If he can keep with up that.”

Welsh also was high on redshirt freshman Alaric Jackson, who is backing up senior Boone Myers at left tackle.

“He’s picking up the offense,” Welsh said. “He’s starting to learn the concepts, the technical stuff behind it. I think he’s going to be another guy that is going to add value.”

Welsh also is impressed by another pair of redshirt freshmen.

“I think Cole Banwart, both him and Spencer Williams, made a lot of progress this spring,” Welsh said. “You see that in a lot of younger guys. You see them make big jumps.”

Mary Ferentz gets nervous on her game day, too

Mary Ferentz, wife of Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz, has run the Iowa Ladies Football Academy each of the last seven years.

A fundraiser for the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital, the academy has raised more than $1.8 million so far.

While her husband doesn’t appear nervous on game day, Mary is just the opposite. She envisioned several bad scenarios taking place last Saturday, the day of the academy.

“I [started] having my bad dreams about two weeks ago,” she said. “Nobody’s going to come. Everybody’s going to have a bad time. We’re going to have a tornado. Just total anxiety.”

As usual, she had nothing for which to worry.

“I drive in [Saturday] morning and I got at here at 8 o’clock, and the parking lot is just buzzing with women,” Mary said. “So right away, it’s going to be OK. We lucked out with the weather. I think we have guardian angels that watch out for us.”

Summer workouts begin for basketball, football

After about a month off following spring semester finals, Iowa’s football and basketball teams are back on campus for workouts. Freshmen for the two sports reported on Monday, though the football team is missing defensive tackle Daviyon Nixon while he clears up some academic work. The remaining 21 players reported.

Iowa basketball has three newbies in center Luka Garza, forward Jack Nunge and guard Connor McCaffery, who will redshirt this season.

As for the returning players, there is a positive note: wide receiver Matt VandeBerg is back working out and running following foot surgery in the spring.

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