Kirk Ferentz could use all the good news he can get.
After a disappointing loss to Michigan State on Saturday, the Iowa football coach was understandably grumpy on Sunday. His secondary performed poorly again in giving up big plays to the Spartans. Injuries were starting to mount on his team, and with Ohio St. and Northwestern looming ahead on the schedule, his mood was about as cheery as the Iowa weather in December.
Cheer up, Kirk, help is on the way.
Help arrived in the way of a verbal commitment from versatile athlete Jalen Embry of Detroit Martin Luther King High School. Embry, 5-11 and 178 pounds, committed to the Hawkeyes after his official visit this past weekend. Embry, a cornerback and wide receiver, is projected to play defense at Iowa, which should put a ray of sunshine in even Ferentz’s gloomy disposition.
“I met with Coach Ferentz today and we had a really good conversation,” Embry told Rivals.com. “He was telling me how excited he was to have me there and then asked if I had any questions about Iowa that he could answer. I told him just one, ‘When can I commit? He said, ‘You can commit today. I know that would sure make my weekend a lot better.’ So I told him, ‘All right, that’s what I want to do.’”
The Hawkeyes have had their share of struggles in the secondary, having to start freshman Desmond King at corner for most of the season. B.J. Lowery has been burned on several occasions for long touchdowns. Nickel back Sean Draper leads the team in air tackles, and miscomunications have resulted in receivers running free in the secondary. After the game, Ferentz had this to say about the struggling secondary:
“We gave up some plays and made some good plays,” Ferentz said. “We will just try to play better, look at the films. Like we do at every position, if we think somebody else can play a little bit better we will give those guys an opportunity.”
Unfortunately for Hawkeye fans, it may be next year before help arrives.