1. Kirk Ferentz has told a friend of mine that he may play seven or eight freshmen this year. That's a sign of a quality group, not a lack of depth of the returnees.
2. Former West Des Moines Valley prep, Champ Davis will begin his Iowa career as a fullback. The current Plano, Texas resident is now about 6-2 and 210 pounds. So Champ will need some quality time with Chris Doyle to get the weight needed for blocking in the Big Ten Conference. However, he has the frame. His lineage is great, too, as his father played football for both Woody Hayes and Bobby Bowden. You can read how that happened in the September issue of Hawkeye Illustrated.
3. Josh Clark revealed the news on the Iowa Insider of a potential new member to the Class of 2003. My Dark Friend had a little more information to add. It appears the Hawks have added a junior college fullback to the roster this fall. The athlete has transfered from a California JC as a walk-on. More details will be available soon!
4. Word on the street is the Hawkeye coaching staff has circled in on Maurice Brown and Bob Sanders returning kick-offs this fall. While things could change during camp, like the possibility of a true freshman taking charge, this duo would certainly give the Hawks a threat to score at anytime.
5. As first reported by Josh Clark, the Hawks have offered quarterback Nick Patton. Alongside Chase Patton, Nick is moving his way up to the top on the priority list. The Hawks would love to grab the signature of one of the Patton's to be their future field general. However, the staff also likes quarterbacks Darryl Clark and Brent Schaeffer.
6. The Hawks also will be looking to sign another tight end, despite the signature of Michael Sabers. They are looking for an athletic tight end that can stretch the field. They also hope to land one these fine prospects: Tom Santi, Octavious Darby, or Clayton Sievers.
7. Ramon Ochoa has been in the ear of Coach Erb for the past two years requesting playing time. He will get his chance this fall, and Ramon knows it's his time. Don't be surprised if Ramon ends up becoming a very effective third down receiver this fall.
8. While everyone is counting on James Townsend to play at receiver, one player to keep in mind is Scott Chandler. His 6-7 height would create match up problems with any defensive back in the Big Ten. In addition, he has bulked up to about 225 pounds. He played against legit competition in Texas, and runs routes very well. The chemistry with the probable starting quarterback, his brother and best friend, certainly helps his case.
My Dark Friend called me Sunday morning. I drove to Iowa City to hear some of his news and views on the upcoming football season. He sipped an iced tea at the Wig & Pen in between bites of a Chicago deep dish spinach pizza. Somehow he managed to talk to me while he was shoving everything down his piehole. He told me about a junior college transfer fullback, quarterback recruiting and also discussed depth at wide receiver.