It's Not Plagiarism If You Link To It Says the Option is Feudal Monarchy

By Patrick Vint on September 12, 2018 at 8:00 am
"And then thou shalt pitch it to the left, and the Lord did grin."
The Attainment: The Vision of the Holy Grail to Sir Galahad, Sir Bors, and Sir Perceval (Public Domain)


It's Northern Iowa Week, we already beat Ames, and we apparently can't play Drake -- more on that later -- and that means one thing...


(In this scenario, Iowa is probably Dallas Carter.)

(Except for the part where they never punt.)

(We punt. A lot.)

(Let's get to Ferentz's press conference.)

  • Ivory Kelly-Martin is still not in practice, and it doesn't seem there's much of a hurry to get him back.  "Yeah, the X-rays were fine, so things are good there, it’s just kind of day-to-day right now."  I'd expect he sits Saturday in anticipation of Wisconsin.
  • It seems that Jack Hockaday and Djimon Colbert have locked down their linebacker positions: " Yeah, right now he’s working No. 1, and that’s remained pretty constant. He’s done a really nice job, and we’re just going to keep moving everybody forward. Djimon jumped in there."
  • He is STILL fired up about this cut block thing, and I don't even comprehend what he's talking about here: " I heard coming into work this morning that the NFL commented on the call that was made over the weekend that potentially could have cost one of the teams a game on the slamming of the quarterback thing. It’s kind of interesting that it’s one of the clips I did see Sunday night. I saw another penalty had been called, and it really didn’t look like a penalty to me, just to the naked eye. It really has nothing to do with us, but it just kind of ties in. Last week I went on a little tangent about cut blocking in our level, and my concern is I think the same thing they’re experiencing in the NFL we’re experiencing on the same level with cut blocking. It’s just a subjective and technical call that they’re making."
  • As for this week we NOPE WE'RE STILL NOT DONE WITH THIS: "The bottom line is whether you’re talking about the quarterback rule or this thing, you’re just putting so much pressure on the people who are officiating the game, and they’re out there working their hardest, doing their best, and we keep passing legislation that puts a lot of pressure on them, and I’m not sure it’s fair pressure."
  • Now to Northern IowOH GOD HE'S STILL GOING: "The parallel I’d give you with the targeting deal, it came out initially, then they had the good sense to say, okay, we’re going to go back and review it. They’ve done the same thing with onside kicks. I just kind of see us going down that road. You can’t review every play. I guess my commentary is it just seems like we’re passing some legislation or making rules that are really tough for the officials to officiate and I don’t think it’s fair to them. I don’t think it’s good for the game necessarily either, and certainly not talking about player safety, I’m talking about some things that are just pretty obvious and used to be absolutely fine."
  • Ferentz went in on the traditional "they're coming here to win and we need to play hard" message to his team, but when it comes to UNI, he has a point: "I think all you’ve got to do for us is look at the last three series we’ve had Northern Iowa, whether it be in ’14, whether it be in ’12. Both of those, 11-point and 8-point wins, but more specifically the 2009 ballgame where we had a really good football team and were losing 13-3 in the third quarter, and basically it was a miracle finish for us to win the football game."
  • Ferentz does seem to think the disastrous passing game through two weeks is largely due to little things.  "There’s so many things that can go haywire in the passing game. And the bottom line is we haven’t been consistent enough at this given point."
  • It's soft-focus feature week, which means questions about things like the origins of The Swarm, Parker Hesse's high school teammate who now plays halfback at UNI, and Coach Butch Pederson at West Branch High.  But someone asked what is wrong with Stanley, and Ferentz just sort of lost his mind: "I’ve never played quarterback. I did throw one pass — yeah, one pass in 10th grade. I completed it, too. I didn’t have my contacts in and I couldn’t see. I just hauled it out and some guy caught it; it was a miracle. That’s a long story, we won’t go there. But I did throw one pass in my life, but I’m not a passer. But I know a little bit about throwing a baseball, and you can’t aim a ball, I know that, when you throw something."  And, with that, we're done for the week.

Oh, wait, except this:

Q. The four straight home games to open the season, that’s very seldom done by anybody. Is it problematic —
KIRK FERENTZ: It sounds like maybe they do in the southeast. I didn’t mention a conference, I just said a geographic area of the country.



Via Ward Photo and Tommy Lang, this is genius.

When things have gotten so bad that you, a Millennial, make a fake phone call...


Iowa defensive coordinator Norm Parker used to advocate for the abolition of the spread offense, so frustrating was that particular tactic to him.  And Pat Fitzgerald and his Northwestern Wildcats would laugh and laugh, because Iowa really didn't have a tactic for dealing with the offense that it quasi-created and still ran better than just about everyone.  HA HA! they would say while wearing a Quaker hat, I'M USING THE RULES OF FOOTBALL!!

Fast forward a football generation, and the shoe is now on the other foot as Pat Fitzgerald tries to defend that most trendy of offensive innovations, the run/pass option:

“I think it’s illegal, to be honest with you. When you look at the tape at the linemen are three, four yards down the field. It’s communism, it’s the purest form of communism. To have a lineman 2.3 yards down the field, that’s legal, but when he goes 3 yards, then it’s illegal. You can’t see that until after the play. You try to use the rules to your advantage.”

This sounds like hyperbole.  Football itself is quite communist to begin with, but to say that a play where the quarterback throws a pass with a lineman three yards downfield is "communist" has no basis in reality, right?

And then I went back and translated some of Marx from the original German, and I found this tidbit in the Communist Manifesto:

Historical action is to yield to [coaches'] personal inventive action; historically created conditions of emancipation to fantastic ones ("fantastic ones" obviously meaning downfield offensive linemen); and the gradual, spontaneous class organisation of the proletariat to an organisation of society especially contrived by these inventors. Future history resolves itself, in their eyes, into the propaganda and the practical carrying out of their [run/pass option] plans. 

So maybe Fitzgerald has a point.  Maybe run/pass options are Communist.

Or maybe a coach and a program that is built on a gimmick should check itself before criticizing an evolution of that gimmick that it failed to recognize.


Forbes ranked the most 'valuable' college football programs based on a three-year average of revenue and projected profit.  Iowa is bundled with Michigan State and Wisconsin in the mid-20s, a couple of spots behind Nebraska.  Penn State, Michigan and Ohio State are all ranked in the top 15.

Austin Blythe made the PFF Team of the Week.

As Courtney pointed out, Blythe played every snap for the Rams Monday

Riley McCarron got cut by the Patriots, and if you ever needed a reason for why Iowa struggles so mightily to recruit receivers, this stat says it all:

Iowa City gonna Iowa City.

This article on how the life-threatening, Carolinas-destroying Hurricane Florence might give Nebraska a better chance of rescheduling its cancelled game against Akron, is surprisingly not from Onion Sports.

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