Iowa Football Diary: CFP Expansion to 12 Teams, Tracy’s Expanded Role, Parker Making State History



Defensive coordinator Phil Parker will be the first assistant coach in the state to earn a million dollar salary, according to a report.

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Iowa wide receiver Tyrone Tracy Jr. catches a ball over a defenseman during Iowa’s spring soccer practice at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, April 17, 2021.


Kirk Ferentz first heard about the plan to extend the college football qualifiers to 12 teams on his car stereo.

“A week ago, I hadn’t really thought about [the expansion]”Ferentz said at a press conference on Tuesday.”… I was in the car and I had to drive to Des Moines, so I had the radio on, so I heard about it and I thought it was ‘was decided in advance or official.

Since the start of the CFP in 2014, it has been limited to four teams selected by a committee of 13 members. The proposed expansion would bring 12 teams into the playoffs – the six highest-ranked conference champions as well as six overall teams.

“It’s probably good. I’d rather see that, I wasn’t a big fan of the four-team playoffs, ”Ferentz said. “Apparently the media and the fans aren’t either, because that’s why this is all happening and there is a lot of clamor for it. What I don’t like about the four-team thing is kind of a win-all mentality. This is really what the NFL is. The only happy teams in the NFL are… the teams that reach the top. “

But Ferentz said college football is a whole different landscape than the NFL. There are only 32 teams in the NFL compared to 130 teams in the NCAA’s Division I Football Bowl.

And as soon as we get closer to the playoffs, the fans only focus on one thing.

” Every time [selection show] tunes, all the attention goes there, ”Ferentz said. “And there are so many great stories in college football… and so many great experiences going on and so many great stories, but all of that is being played down by the eight teams in discussion and then the four.”

Tracy ready to lead a large reception hall

Iowa football’s large reception hall was hit when Ihmir Smith-Marsette and Brandon Smith left the program to join the NFL.

Smith-Marsette was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the fifth round of the 2021 NFL Draft as the 157th overall pick, and Smith signed an unwritten free agent contract with the Dallas Cowboys.

But now junior wide receiver Tyrone Tracy Jr. is ready to take over.

“I feel like last year my role was a bit behind Ihmir and Smith, if I’m honest,” Tracy said. “But this year I’m at the forefront like getting the ball and everything. So, I’m pretty excited about this part. Plus, I’m excited to lead the wide receiver room. I’m not the oldest, but I’m the most experienced in the field, so a lot of people are looking for advice and leading the way.

RELATED: After production “slumped” last season, Iowa wide receiver Tyrone Tracy Jr. braced for expanded role

Senior Charlie Jones and junior Nico Rgaini will join Tracy in the wide receiver room, along with freshmen Arland Bruce IV and Keagan Johnson.

And in 2021-2022, Tracy has lofty goals for her junior season.

“I want to be the best wide receiver in the Big Ten,” Tracy said. “It’s like one of my main goals. But I also want to hit 1,000 yards, that hasn’t happened here in a while. I know if I hit 1,000 yards, I’ll have a real opportunity to win the Big Ten’s top receiver. I feel like to get there I need to have a good offense and I think I have it.

Phil Parker to become $ 1million assistant coach

According to a HawkCentral report, Iowa defensive coordinator Phil Parker is expected to be the first assistant coach in the state to earn a salary of $ 1 million.

Ferentz and sporting director Gary Barta have signed a two-year contract for Parker, worth $ 2.2 million until the 2022 season.

Parker has been with the program since the start of the Ferentz era in 1999, first as a defensive back coach. In 2013, Parker was promoted to Defensive Coordinator in addition to his coaching position.

“Knowing that Coach Parker is our coach, sometimes I’ll go home and tell people who my coach is, and they’ll know that’s a big name,” junior defensive back Dane Benton said Tuesday. “I would say we wear it as a badge of honor, able to be trained by a guy like that. There are ups and downs, you know, because he’s a tough trainer and you have to take him because you know he’s trying to get the best out of you.


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