ladies and gentlemen, Adam Jacobi has returned to Black Heart Gold Pants. BHGP is one of the best blogs within the SB Nation college network and their humor and attitude is unmatched. Jacobi is one of the best when it comes to that humor, and he was kind enough to answer my questions about the Hawkeyes:
T-Mill: It is well established the AIRBHG is real and feared. Does Mark Weisman survive the season or is there new blood for the beast?
Adam: AIRBHG is a real thing—if even Phil Steele acknowledges AIRBHG, AIRBHG is official—but Iowa has eight scholarship running backs (and one walk-on fullback) and all are, at this point, healthy and happy to be on the team. The only thing close to someone getting squeezed out of playing time is Damon Bullock, whom Purdue held completely in check last year, and he's transitioning to WR.
T-Mill: Iowa may have been the only school more upset at its coach (Kirk Ferentz) and offensive coordinator (Greg Davis) than Purdue, yet they survived the season. What does Iowa need to do for both to be safe?
Adam: Kirk Ferentz's contract is keeping him safe for several more years. It might be the only reason he's still in Iowa City. Davis doesn't have that luxury—not only do assistants not enjoy massive buyouts, but Iowa assistants are all employed at-will, so the school wouldn't have to eat any future salary if Davis' time has come. So if we expect to see Davis in a third season, Iowa's got to return to mere competence on offense. He's got the personnel to at least run a competent offense, but as laid out at BHGP previously, that offense isn't what Davis runs; it's more along the lines of ~2010 Wisconsin (or as a commenter mentioned, the really good Glen Mason zone run offenses of a decade ago). So if Davis is going to do a decent job coaching the offense this year, either the personnel will have to more
T-Mill: Is there any hope at all for the offense to improve?
Adam: The offense has to improve. It can't possibly be as bad again. Paul Myerberg guarantees it'll be substantially better. There's been an influx of WRs that bring more speed and less size, which is sort of what you want in an edge-to-edge passing game (what you really want is not that passing game at all, but Greg Davis is here, so...). There's a four-man competition at QB, and you've got to figure one can at least be more productive than James Vandenberg was last year.