2007 Iowa Football Preview by BigTen-fans.com

 
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2007 Iowa Hawkeyes football preview

2006 Record: 6-7, 2-6
Head Coach: Kirk Ferentz

Players Drafted:
Marshal Yanda - OT - Round 3 - Baltimore
Scott Chandler - TE - Round 4 - San Diego
Mike Elgin - OC - Round 7 - New England

Top Recruits:
Diauntae Morrow - CB - 5’11” - 180 - Lakewood, OH
Bryan Beluga - OT - 6’5” - 270 - Woodstock, IL
Jordan Bernstine - S - 5’10” - 200 - Des Moines, IA
Christian Ballard - TE - 6’4” - 280 - Lawrence, KS
Cedric Everson - CB - 6’1” - 175 - Detroit, MI

Key Players Returning:
Albert Young - RB - Sr.
Damian Sims - RB - Sr.
Dominique Douglas - WR - Soph.
Seth Olsen - OG - Jr.
Jake Christensen - QB - Soph.
Andy Brodell - WR - Jr.
Mike Klinkenborg - LB - Sr.
Ken Iwebema - DE - Sr.
Adam Shada - DB - Sr.
Mitch King - DT - Jr.
Bryan Mattison - DE - Sr.

 

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2007 Iowa Offensive Outlook

The Hawkeyes will turn to sophomore Jake Christensen as the replacement for Drew Tate at QB in 2007 which will shift the offensive focus to well-known RB Albert Young. Young is a tough runner who handled the majority of carries last season, but do not discount the abilities of senior Damian Sims. The combination of Young and Sims will give Christensen a reliable runner behind him at all times.

The receivers are fairly young, but junior Andy Brodell has the ability to shine opposite of sophomore Dominique Douglas. Douglas led the Hawkeyes with 49 receptions in his freshman campaign, and Brodell found the end zone five times last year. The TE position remains a question mark after the loss of Scott Chandler to the NFL Draft. Chandler was a top a top target out of the TE position, and the Hawkeyes will need junior Tony Moeaki to show he is capable of catching passes consistently. Also look for incoming freshman Christian Ballard to battle for time at TE this season.

The offensive line will probably be filled with underclassmen and needs to develop quickly. Junior G Seth Olsen and sophomore C Rafael Eubanks are the only two lineman returning with significant experience. Opposing defenses will be able to focus on the running game until Chistensen can prove he is capable of beating teams through the air. A lot of pressure will be on the offensive lineman to allow Christensen time to be successful.

 

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2007 Iowa Defensive Outlook

The Hawkeyes defense has a solid base returning and should have six experienced seniors starting. Juniors Mitch King and Matt Kroul will team up with seniors Ken Iwebema and Bryan Mattison to create one of the best defensive lines in the Big Ten this year. Iwebema returns after missing six games in 2006 due to a shoulder injury. King (5.5 sacks) and Mattison (6.5 sacks) combined for 12 sacks in 2006 and will be high on the scouting reports for opposing teams in 2007.

The secondary is set at the cornerback positions with seniors Adam Shada and Charles Godfrey. Shada and Godfrey are both solid defensive backs, but the safety positions are still up for grabs.

Senior LB Mike Klinkenborg has a nose for the ball (129 tackles in 2006), and senior Mike Humpal will provide solid help in the middle of the field. While the defense has a number of veterans in starting positions, the overall depth of the defense will remain in question. There are a number of battles at positions that could drive players to step up and earn playing time.



2007 Iowa Special Teams

The Hawkeyes lost two key starters from last season in K Kyle Schlicher and P Andy Fenstermaker. Both positions are basically open for the taking this year, but sophomore K Austin Signor and freshman P Ryan Donahue have a good shot at landing the kicking duties. What was a security blanket in the past will be a question until someone proves they can handle the pressure on game days.

Andy Brodell is the leading candidate to return punts. Young will return kickoffs along with junior RB Shonn Greene.

2007 Iowa Prediction

It is no secret that many fans felt the Hawkeyes underachieved in 2006. Kirk Ferentz seems to keep the Hawkeyes competitive each year, but now is the time for the Hawkeyes to make a run based on scheduling. Iowa will not play Michigan or Ohio State this season which should give the Hawkeyes hope of improving their win total in 2007. Nine wins isn’t out of reach for Iowa in 2007, but veteran players will need to stay healthy for the fans in Iowa City to see success this year.


Iowa Hawkeyes 2007 Football Schedule
September 1 - Northern Illinois
September 8 - Syracuse
September 15 - @ Iowa State
September 22 - @ Wisconsin
September 29 - Indiana
October 6 - @ Penn State
October 13 - Illinois
October 20 - @ Purdue
October 27 - Michigan State
November 3 - @ Northwestern
November 10 - Minnesota
November 17 - Western Michigan

 

 

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