Iowa starting quarterback Spencer Petras isn’t set to write any sort of eulogies on he or the Hawkeyes’ offensive fortunes in 2022. Immediately following the loss to Iowa State, Petras had this to say about whether or not his confidence has been shaken in any regard by poor play and the outside noise.
“For the most part, the only time I get that exposure is just during the games. I don’t have social media, so, no, I mean, I think that the biggest thing is just going to work every day and working to improve, because I still feel like this is not representative of our offense. And that’s I’m sure not what, you know, people want to hear because that’s what we’ve shown the last two weeks, but, you know, the process is kind of a long and winding road.
“Sometimes it all comes together, sometimes it all comes unraveled. It’s an old George Strait song, but I still have a lot of high hopes for our unit and for our team. This doesn’t change any of our goals. The only thing we can’t be now is undefeated, but the rest of our goals are still out in front of us. I sound like a broken record, but the key is just improving. I truly do believe that there’s good in front of this unit. We’ve just got to go do it,” Petras said.
Thus far, Petras has completed just 45.1% of his passes for 201 yards with no touchdowns and a pair of interceptions. In his past six starts with extended playing time, Petras has just the one touchdown pass and nine interceptions. The Hawkeyes haven’t scored more than 17 points in any of those games.
To this point in 2022, Iowa is the nation’s worst total offense with 158 yards per game and scoring offense with seven points per game. The Hawkeyes rank 127th nationally in passing and rushing offense, respectively, averaging just 100.5 passing yards and 57.5 rushing yards per game.
Asked what went wrong most recently against Iowa State, Petras pointed the problems at his technique.
“You know, I think I need to reserve full judgment just until I watch the tape. You know, I can probably think of three or four plays right off the top of my head just my feet are, wasn’t clean with my feet, which seems to be, you know, that’s a good indicator if the play’s going to go well for me or not. Yeah, you know, just I think Iowa State played really hard, they played well. Good defense. Just got to be better next week,” Petras said.
Through a pair of games, Iowa is currently 7-of-28 on third down conversion tries. Like their other offensive statistics, that 25% conversion rate ranks among the country’s worst. The Hawkeyes’ third down conversion rank is No. 124 nationally.
“Yeah, and I think each one’s an individual play. You know, it’s kind of, I just think it’s execution. It’s overall execution to give you a pretty basic answer, because each play itself is its own thing. Right, like on one play, maybe it’s bad timing on my part and then the next play it’s something else. You know, it just depends. I do absolutely believe that we have a really good scheme. We just need to execute,” Petras said of Iowa’s third down conversion struggles.
The next chance for Petras and the Hawkeyes to show improvement will come against the Nevada Wolf Pack.
“Yeah, you know, young team, new staff, so it’s kind of limited with tape, but from what they have, the three games they have played this year, they have a pretty solid identity it seems,” Petras said of Nevada. “They know what they want to do, and that’s always a sign of I think a defense that’s, they know what they want to do because that’s what they think they’re best at. That presents a challenge for an offense just because they’re going to rep the hell out of a certain coverage and things like that, so we’ve got to be ready to attack it.”
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