Isn't She Lovely?
DYK: Our 6:40pm kickoff against Miami (OH) this Saturday will be the first time in program history we have opened the season under the lights inside Kinnick Stadium | #Hawkeyes pic.twitter.com/x8EGbRtA3B— Hawkeye Football (@HawkeyeFootball) August 27, 2019
Don't Ask Me No Questions, and I Won't Tell You No Lies
One of the mainstays of the last thirty years of Iowa athletics is the Sunday coaches' shows. During the fall, we get Kirk Ferentz and Gary Dolphin talking briefly about the previous week's game, a few interspersed highlights, a soft-focus feature story on someone. In the winter, the focus turns to basketball but the content remains fairly similar. They are hardly must-see television, and virtually no news is actually made on them, as the production is from the UI and the questions are softballs. They aren't even shown on regional networks in half the state.
And now, those shows are gone:
The University of Iowa Athletics Department will feature "The Heartland" television series during the football, basketball and wrestling seasons in 2019-20. The show replaces the weekly football and men's basketball coaches shows that have previously aired throughout the season.
The Heartland is produced by the UI Athletics HawkVision staff, and will include 13 football shows during the fall. The 12 winter show will feature men's basketball in each edition, with women's basketball and wrestling each being featured in six of the shows.
It's basically the same show, only without the segment with the coaches. Perhaps the breakdown of Fran McCaffery's relationship with Dolph last season made this inevitable, at least on the basketball side.
To be honest, though, the coaches didn't add much value to their programs or the P.R. mission of the university through these shows. The whole thing felt like a contrivance and, increasingly, a waste of time for Ferentz and McCaffery. If Iowa can increase the production values of the features, utilize some of their on-air talent in a new way, and broaden the focus, it's probably a good thing for everyone.
Then again, the shows are moving from Sunday night to Saturday morning in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Ottumwa, the Quad Cities, and on Mediacom public access. So everyone's going to be tailgating while they're on regardless.
The defending Big Ten Tournament Champion Iowa Hawkeyes women's basketball squad got their full 2020 conference schedule last week. Iowa gets home-and-home sets with 2019 doormats Wisconsin and Penn State, but also perennial contender Maryland and rivals Minnesota and Nebraska. Rutgers and Michigan, who joined Iowa and the Terps in the top tier of the conference last year, are single-game road trips.
Iowa's non-conference schedule doesn't offer much. The Hawkeyes host Clemson (a 9-seed in last year's tournament) the first week of December, seven days before a trip to Ames. But the only other power conference team on the schedule, Washington, was awful last year. Cincinnati won 21 games last year, but didn't make the tournament.
It's going to be a bit of a rebuild for Lisa Bluder, what with losing the country's best player and all. But if Iowa takes a significant step back in 2019-20, it won't be because the schedule broke against them.
Odds and Ends
Friend of the Program, frequent GIA podcast guest and former winner of the FWAA top Game Story of the Year Award (for his story on Iowa's 55-24 win over Ohio State, a game many people forget about) John Bohnenkamp is joining the faculty in the UI Journalism program this year. I'm going to put on a fake mustache and re-enroll just to see the tweed jacket.
George Kittle did an interview with the San Jose Mercury-News where, among other things, he blames his mere 44 catches at Iowa on C.J. Beathard.
Do you think [Iowa coach Kirk] Ferentz throws to tight ends more now that you’ve had this nice start to an NFL career? Dude didn’t throw to you at all, and now they’re getting two tight ends taken high in the draft.
I was hurt my senior year, so that’s not on him. Blame CJ. That’s actually his fault.
The BTN football tour bus damn near got stuck under the railroad bridge outside EPB last week.
A photo story in three parts:— Joseph Cress (@josephwcress) August 20, 2019
I spotted the @B1Gfootball tour bus narrowly avoid an Iowa Avenue bridge disaster this afternoon after @ChadLeistikow chatted with @BTNDaveRevsine for his newest @hawkcentral column: https://t.co/k2qBV4ZNv9 pic.twitter.com/B0jvYz7AW0
If you ever wondered why Nebraska is always broke:
The sportsbook at @AmeristarCB casino in Council Bluffs, Iowa already has a $100,000 liability on the Nebraska Cornhuskers to win the national title. The sportsbook has been open a week.— David Payne Purdum (@DavidPurdum) August 27, 2019
Just when I think we're out of oral histories, we get the story of how Las Vegas Stars pitcher Keith Comstock took a baseball in the groin on his minor league baseball card in 1988.
Elijah Sindelar went through a (quite late) growth spurt this summer, and is now the tallest quarterback in Big Ten history:
Purdue depth chart. pic.twitter.com/alTSNF6cKp— Tom Dienhart (@TomDienhart1) August 26, 2019
BIFF POGGI GUN SHOW:
OH MY GOD pic.twitter.com/3V6hsOWncR— Adam Henderson (@AdamdotH) August 24, 2019
And finally, the title sequence for failed 1990 sitcom pilot "Where's Rodney?" It was the most ineffective use of pro-level talent we'd seen until the 2010 Iowa football team.
Few failed TV pilots are as horrendous as NBC's 1990 family sitcom dumpster fire "...WHERE'S RODNEY?" about a preteen Rodney Dangerfield fan with the unexplained power to forcefully teleport the comedian to his location to give him life advice. Theme song alone is maximum cringe. pic.twitter.com/C9W7GU24FA— Foywonder (@Foywonder) August 23, 2019