Iowa’s head coach, Kirk Ferentz, didn’t hold back during his recent media session, addressing criticism of his team’s offenses and taking a few pointed shots at other programs, particularly USC and head coach Lincoln Riley.
Despite the Hawkeyes’ overall success, Ferentz’s offenses have faced criticism, leading to the departure of his son as the offensive coordinator. When discussing his approach to finding a new offensive coordinator, Ferentz emphasized the importance of evaluating coordinators based on their team’s wins per game.
Ferentz hinted at a recent addition to the conference with impressive offensive stats, suggesting that these coordinators often gain recognition through their offensive prowess. However, he urged a closer look at their wins per game, implying a correlation between an offensive-focused approach and challenges in winning games and maintaining a strong defense. He stressed the significance of a team concept for success.
While not explicitly naming Lincoln Riley or USC, Ferentz’s comments were clearly directed at the Trojans. He highlighted USC’s recent struggles on defense, citing their 42-point concession to Tulane in a bowl game, a stark contrast to the defensive mindset Ferentz’s team has upheld for 25 years.
Kirk on evaluating wins vs stats
“I can think of a guy who entered the conference recently that came with widely acclaimed offensive stats..”
“There’s a school on the west coast right now that’s going to re-commit to defense… at a place where Ronnie Lott played” pic.twitter.com/9B3IogzpUP
— Blake Hornstein (@BlakeHornTV) December 18, 2023
These comments have raised eyebrows and set the stage for future matchups, as Iowa is set to face USC in a scheduled Big Ten regular-season game in 2025. If both Ferentz and Riley remain in their roles, these remarks are likely to be a focal point of discussion leading up to the game.