Thought: Don't give up on Kirk Ferentz!
Posted Nov 4, 2012

Doan Thought: Don't give up on Kirk Ferentz quite yet

By Bart Doan
Follow me @Bart_cfn
Every year at Iowa it feels like senior year in high school going into college. There you are, sitting on a basketball court in the middle of nowhere with your high school flame one last time, a six pack from your parents' fridge you're not supposed to have, watching the salty days of one last summer go by. All your buddies are telling you that college is going to be basically Amsterdam mixed in with classes here and there. So you figure, you probably don't want a girlfriend for all that. It's going to hurt parting ways though, as she rebounds another one of your errant, Coors Light influenced jumpers.

Iowa lost again this weekend, this time to Indiana, of all teams. They dropped to 4-5. Calls for Kirk Ferentz' job are louder than...well, you know, every other year now. The problems remain consistent. For some reason, it feels like Ladell Betts was the last healthy #1 running back there. Losses, inexplicable ones, keep piling up. But the oft critiqued "Jeff Tedford of the plains" should keep his job.

This isn't a column about all of the great things on the field Ferentz and staff have done recently, it's more a cautionary tale for why change for change sake just isn't really that good. Being single is great, until people are asking you why you can't hold down a relationship at Thanksgiving dinner, or when you're looking to stay in on a Friday night. Being in a relationship is fantastic, until the waitress who's a 10 drops her number on your table and you wonder if she's sight impaired.

Ferentz is, by all accounts from anyone you talk to that's dealt with him, one of the last true gentlemen in college football coaching. He's ethical to a fault on the recruiting trail, and has the respect of his peers beyond words. The reality though is, if you break up with this girl, Iowa, there are no guarantees you won't be looking at old clippings of her in two years.

As we've seen recently, there is no blueprint for hiring coaches. Once upon a time, Rich Rodriguez was the hottest coach on the market, turning down Alabama. Then Michigan got him, he stunk up the joint, and Tulane could have pulled him in three years later. Pro coach ala Pete Carroll coming back? Ask Tennessee how that worked with Lane Kiffin or Nebraska with Bill Callahan. Proven or unproven, NFL or college background, there is no fool proof answer, and that's why Iowa should take pause with Ferentz, who has maintained loyalty in spite of everyone saying he loves the NFL just that much more.

Iowa City is one of the great gems in college football on a Saturday. It has that "shoe polish signs in the window saying we're closed because of the game" type Odessa-Permian feel to it. In Kinnick, oh, it gets loud. It never will get the credit it deserves. And because of that, it will be hard to lure a top flite coach there, certainly one better than Ferentz. The recruiting trail is a haul too. There aren't many local five star kids to reel in.

Yes, the losses are harrowing for a program with so much potential, but it's mindful for college football fans across the land to understand that the grass is not always greener on the other side. Later on in life, I got the wise idea to ask women what they actually wanted in life. All of them said "stability, even when things go bad." Iowa fans calling for Kirk's job should heed the advice of women. They're right (just please, for the sake of our gender, never let them know).