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Iowa head football coach Kirk Ferentz has 143 wins under his belt at the University of Iowa, one away from the all-time record.

The Gazette will count down each win, as ranked by writer Marc Morehouse.

47

Everyone punts

Iowa 27, Arizona 17 | Sept. 19, 2009

Iowa's Pat Angerer (43) and A.J. Edds (49) celebrate a sack by Karl Klug (95) against Arizona during the third quarter at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2009, in Iowa City. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Iowa's Pat Angerer (43) and A.J. Edds (49) celebrate a sack by Karl Klug (95) against Arizona during the third quarter at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2009, in Iowa City. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
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Three cool things:

1. Well, you knew we’d get to punting and here it is. Sort of.

Former Iowa punter Ryan Donahue got a Big Ten player of the week out of this game with a 51.0 average on five punts. If he did that now, Iowa would make him president.

In 2007, Donahue set the Iowa record for punts in a season with 86. That’s still a Big Ten record, I think. (These things would take forever if I looked up every little thing.)

[Just for a second, admire the names on Iowa’s individual list of names in the punting record books — Reggie Roby, Nile Kinnick, Jason Baker, Donahue and Reggie Roby two more times.]

So, 2007 was the punt year. Since then, Iowa has mostly been middle-of-the-road in the league in number of punts. It was second in 2016.

What I’m saying, like the children’s book “Everyone Poops,” everyone punts. It’s messy. It’s not the end goal (at least not in football). It generally ends up being an unpleasant exercise, but it’s something everyone has to do.

I’m not going to go soapbox and say punting is great, but it is essential and you do want to do it as well as you possibly can.

Hayden Fry knew this.

Fry and former assistant Dan McCarney sat at the Waterloo Ramada waiting for Reggie Roby to call. It was about midnight and they were tilting what McCarney termed “a few cold toddies.”

This was late 1978 and Hayden Fry was heading into his first year as head coach at Iowa. This was a big deal for an Iowa program trying to get off the ground.

The Hawkeyes had to get Roby, a national recruit in their backyard. Why else would Fry be drinking “cold toddies” at the Waterloo Ramada?

“We both were nervous,” said McCarney, who served as an assistant under Fry for 11 seasons. “We thought we did the best job we could recruiting a kid out of Iowa. And we didn’t feel we had him. We were sweating it out, waiting for the call.”

McCarney saw Roby, then a Parade all-American at Waterloo East, boot a kickoff through the uprights at an East game. The decision came down to Iowa and Wisconsin.

“It’s hard to imagine a punter meaning so much to a program,” McCarney said. “But we’re talking about one of the best punters ever in college football. He was one of the reasons why we went to the Rose Bowl.”

McCarney said Fry had a knack for recruiting, no matter the circumstances.

“It didn’t matter if he was sitting in a $1 million home or a trailer park,” McCarney said. “He always made kids feel special.”

A little after midnight in the Waterloo Ramada, the call came. Roby would punt for the Hawks.

“We were jumping around, hooting and hollering like a couple of 10-year-old kids,” McCarney said. “It might’ve been the best two-man celebration ever at the Waterloo Ramada.”

Punting is an element in Iowa football history. Everyone punts.

2. OK, get ready to laugh.

Arizona had this quarterback on the bench named Nick Foles. They thought another guy was better. I think read option or something along those lines.

This worked out OK for the Hawkeyes. Foles didn’t enter the game until the fourth quarter. He completed 6 of 11 for 55 yards and a TD. He made it a game. The Hawkeyes got a closer look at Foles in 2010 at Tucson.

Arizona had this tight end named Rob Gronkowski. Unfortunately, he was injured and missed this game. Hey, I wanted to see him play, especially against this Iowa defense. That would’ve been fun for everyone.

3. On the Iowa side of things, tackle Bryan Bulaga, wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos and tight end Tony Moeaki missed this game.

This was when everyone thought Bulaga might’ve had an infected tattoo. I think someone on Twitter announced his death.

”For the record, he doesn’t have an infected tattoo,” Ferentz said. “Doesn’t have an infected tattoo, his life’s not at risk. I think I made that point pretty clear the first time. This is just something that’s got to pass.”

I forgot all about that tattoo thing. Obviously, Bulaga, a Super Bowl champion with the Green Bay Packers, lived.

Quote: This is the most Iowa quote ever from someone who knows what Iowa is all about:

“We knew defensively they’re as good as anybody we’ve played over the last ... USC included, these guys are efficient,” said Arizona Coach Mike Stoops, the former Iowa All-American defensive back. “They’re bigger, they’re faster than people want to give them credit for. Their safeties cover a lot of ground, they protect their guys with the guys up front.

“My impression of them hasn’t changed any; they’re a very good team. I think they’re better once you play them in person than some people want to give them credit for.”

Note: We used to be able to walk behind the bench as the game was going on. It is on the way to the locker room. This is where A.J. Edds said the thing about the Jugs Machine. Now, we wait on the sideline, but not until two minutes are left in the game.

So much energy and time and thinking is spent on “herding” the media. Sucks that it’s that way.

Why No. 47? — Everyone punts. And everyone at home can turn the channel.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE OF THE GAME

Game story from 2009

IOWA CITY — In the end, it was OK to laugh.

Iowa linebacker A.J. Edds had an onside kick ricochet off his chest and into fullback Brett Morse’s arms to wrap up the Hawkeyes’ 27-17 victory Saturday over Arizona.

“I need to get on the Jugs Machine,” the senior laughed on the bench.

It was OK to laugh.

Quarterback Ricky Stanzi gives up a pick six, laugh it off. The offense rushes for 40 yards in the second half, LOL. And watch for linebacker Pat Angerer at an open mic night. He works a little blue, but he’s a million laughs.

“I don’t know what the hell is going on,” Angerer responded to a question on Arizona’s failed fake field goal.

In the end, it was OK to laugh along with the 70,585 fans at Kinnick Stadium. Freshman running back Adam Robinson fueled the Hawkeyes (3-0) with 101 yards and two touchdowns.

Iowa’s defense embraced coordinator Norm Parker’s call for “six seconds of hell” and bolted down a rush offense that averaged 305.4 yards a game, allowing just 148 yards. Stanzi blew off a rocky first half and directed a monster 14-play, 8:30 drive, capped by running back Brandon Wegher’s 2-yard TD, for a 27-10 lead with 4:40 left.

And the Hawkeyes held up their end of the bargain. The stage is set for an undefeated showdown next week at Penn State (3-0) to open Big Ten play.

It’s the “white out.” It’s Beaver Stadium. It’s an ABC national primetime telecast.

“I can think of about 110,000 people who’ll think it’ll be real big,” Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz said. “And they’ll all be wearing white T-shirts, too.”

Iowa’s offense was far from perfect, chugging out just 338 yards, but consider that the Hawkeyes were without left tackle Bryan Bulaga (undisclosed illness), tight end Tony Moeaki (ankle) and wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos (hamstring).

Ferentz said they remain “day-to-day.” Bulaga wasn’t cleared to return to practice this week and hasn’t put on pads since Sept. 8.

“They all had a chance, that’s the good news,” Ferentz said. “The bad news is there’s no way to predict it right now. We just kind of have to wait and see.”

Saturday, in the end, they could laugh about it.

Iowa’s defense held Arizona (2-1) to 94 yards in the second half. Before the Wildcats broke through to make it 27-17 with 1:53 left, the Cats’ second half went punt, punt, punt, safety Tyler Sash’s interception that turned into Daniel Murray’s 40-yard field goal and punt.

After he went 4 of 8 for 50 yards in the first half, UA quarterback Matt Scott was 0 for 6 in the second half, including the Sash pick. He was eventually pulled. Running back Nic Grigsby, who came in as the No. 2 rusher in the nation averaging 162.5, was held to 75 yards on 11 carries.

Grigsby had a 58-yarder stopped a yard short of a touchdown by cornerback Amari Spievey. The Hawkeyes held UA to a field goal but that kind of ripped out the Cats’ heart and showed it to them.

“We knew defensively they’re as good as anybody we’ve played over the last ... USC included, these guys are efficient,” said Arizona Coach Mike Stoops, the former Iowa All-American defensive back. “They’re bigger, they’re faster than people want to give them credit for. Their safeties cover a lot of ground, they protect their guys with the guys up front.

“My impression of them hasn’t changed any; they’re a very good team. I think they’re better once you play them in person than some people want to give them credit for.”

If the goal-line stand didn’t kill the Cats, the third-and-23 did.

Iowa looked at a third-and-23 from its 32 and handed the ball to Robinson. He broke one tackle, another and then broke open, going 43 yards to UA’s 25 before he was tracked down. Stanzi, who finished 20 of 32 for 205 yards, hit wide receiver Marvin McNutt for a 34-yard gain to UA’s 1 and Robinson finished it for a 14-10 lead Iowa wouldn’t give back.

“There aren’t a lot of great calls on third-and-23. I always let Ken (offensive coordinator O’Keefe) handle those,” Ferentz joked. “Gladly.”

Robinson, who limped off with a thigh injury but said he was fine, just thanked his offensive line.

“I saw a lot of green and realized, we can convert this,” Robinson said.

He wasn’t laughing and that’s the theme. Penn State isn’t a laughing matter.