Iowa Football

Kirk Ferentz expects Iowa-Nebraska Black Friday football game to return in 2022

Hawkeyes scheduled to end season against Wisconsin in 2020, 2021

Iowa Hawkeyes defensive lineman Nathan Bazata (99) and linebacker Bo Bower (41) grab the Heroes Trophy after the Hawkeyes' 56-14 victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb., on Friday, November 24, 2017. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)
Iowa Hawkeyes defensive lineman Nathan Bazata (99) and linebacker Bo Bower (41) grab the Heroes Trophy after the Hawkeyes' 56-14 victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb., on Friday, November 24, 2017. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)

JOHNSTON — Nebraska still is expressing FOMO (basically fear of missing out) over its decision to leave the Black Friday tradition it started in 1990.

The topic seeped out this week with reports out of Nebraska saying new AD Bill Moos is talking with Iowa about re-upping for Black Fridays. This became a topic last year when former Nebraska AD Shawn Eichorst and former head football coach Mike Riley opted out of Black Friday. That was the shocker last fall when the Big Ten released schedules for the 2020-21 seasons. Instead of Iowa-Nebraska, the Hawkeyes and Wisconsin will meet during the season’s final week, presumably Black Friday. The Huskers will face Minnesota those two years. Iowa and Nebraska will meet on Black Friday in 2018-19. When the Huskers joined the Big Ten in 2011, Iowa agreed to Black Friday meetings.

Ferentz likes Black Friday. Iowa athletics director Gary Barta likes Black Friday. They don’t care as much about the opponent. This is Nebraska realizing that it goofed up and is now trying to get Black Friday with Iowa back on the books.

“With Nebraska moving into the league, it seemed like a logical thing,” Ferentz said. “ ... It would make sense for a lot of us to finish up with that deal. I feel it’s unfortunate that for whatever reason we moved away from it. It sounds like we’re going to rekindle it whatever year that is.”

Ferentz said he believes Iowa and Nebraska will return on Black Friday in 2022. This might’ve been a “whoops, here’s some news.”

“I think after that, we’re back together,” Ferentz said. “And I think it’s maybe a long-term thing, but I thought the last one was long term, too, and we saw how that turned out.”

Injury update

— Senior defensive end Parker Hesse still is in a boot immobilizer after suffering a foot injury during spring practice. He walked around the kids practice in the boot and on crutches. Ferentz said he should be OK for summer drills, which start in three weeks.

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— Senior defensive tackle Matt Nelson, who missed spring after shoulder surgery, said he’s healthy and should be full-go for summer conditioning.

“Matt should be full speed when we get going in June,” Ferentz said. “We’ve been moving guys (on the defensive line) all of spring ball. Matt really helped the guys learn how to play inside because he went through that same transition recently. I can’t say enough about his engagement.”

l Comments: (319) 398-8256; marc.morehouse@thegazette.com

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