By Courtney Baumann
Last week the NCAA Division I Council announced that it would eliminate two-a-days, or multiple contact practices in a day.
Iowa football head coach Kirk Ferentz is not a fan, and that’s putting it nicely.
“The removal of two-a-days, to me, personally is maybe a little shortsighted,” he said in a press conference Wednesday afternoon. “I think I understand what the endgame was.”
While the Iowa football team only had four two-a-day practices last year during camp, the removal of the practices will lengthen the amount of time players will be in practice and shorten their summer breaks.
Ferentz said an “informal survey” of the veteran players showed that they prefer two-a-days as well, since it means they won’t be on the field for an extended period of time during a single practice.
For the upcoming camp, Ferentz said they may have to extend practices to five hours long, rather than having a couple of two and a half hour ones.
This, though, could cause players to lose focus over the long span of time.
“The biggest thing I have is the length. It’s going to be boring as can be. I think we’re going to have to have Monopoly tournaments,” Ferentz said. “It’s going to be a lot of waste of time, and quite frankly to me, camp is about keeping guys on the clock, being efficient, making sure you’re moving and just that’s part of the mental part of the camp, too.”
New Iowa football offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz likes his tight ends.
So much, in fact, that he has eight on the roster now — the newest edition being Drew Cook.
Cook has spent his past two years in the program at quarterback, but he was moved to tight end during spring practice and the coaches intend on keeping him there.
“You’re looking for athletic ability, frame, size. But most of all … you’re looking for guys that think the right way,” Brian Ferentz said. “Guys that approach things the right way. Guys that are improvement-driven, detail oriented. Drew Cook is that kind of guy.”
Ferentz also touched on the running-back situation, where he has Akrum Wadley, a two-year starter, as well as Toks Akinrabade and Toren Young competing for time.
Wadley has been held out of contact practices for precautionary reasons, and Ferentz has liked what he has seen out of the two younger guys.
“I’d say Akrum is our starting running back. He’s our most productive guy. He’s got the most experience. We feel good about the two young guys,” Ferentz said. “They’ve gotten plenty of work, which is a real positive. But between Toks and Toren, we like those guys. We think they can carry the ball in the Big Ten.”
The Brandon Snyder injury will have an impact on Iowa’s backfield, but the defense will cope, said defensive coordinator Phil Parker.
He has seen plenty of good things from his other defensive backs, such as Miles Taylor, Jake Gervase, and Amani Hooker.
“I thought Brandon … he made great jumps. But I expect him to be back and help us on the field as a coach,” Parker said. “He can give insight as a player where he was, and I think he can help out Jake. I think he can help out Hooker to give him different looks and understand the way he looked at it.”