Iowa Football

Tim Polasek, Derrick Foster leaving Iowa football program

Hawkeyes officially announce coaching, roster changes

Iowa assistant coaches Tim Polasek and Derrick Foster are leaving for Wyoming and the NFL, respectively. (The Gazette)
Iowa assistant coaches Tim Polasek and Derrick Foster are leaving for Wyoming and the NFL, respectively. (The Gazette)

IOWA CITY — Iowa football is seeing some changes this offseason with the departure of two of its coaches and a graduating senior.

Iowa offensive line coach Tim Polasek is leaving to become the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at the University of Wyoming, while Iowa running backs coach and offensive recruiting coordinator Derrick Foster will leave for a coaching job with an NFL team. The specifics of the team have not yet been announced, but USA Today reported interest from the Los Angeles Chargers last week. Foster joined the Hawkeye staff in 2018.

“This is an important opportunity for Derrick in the National Football League,” said Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz in a news release. “Since he joined our staff as the running backs coach, Derrick has had a significant impact on the players and our staff. I wish Derrick and Bianca and their two young children all the best in their new home.”

Polasek will reunite with head coach Craig Bohl at Wyoming. The two previously coached together at North Dakota State before Polasek joined the Hawkeyes staff in 2017.

“His experience coaching on the offensive side of the football is going to add great value as we continue to re-engineer and improve our offense going into the 2021 season,” Bohl said in a news release.

“To reunite with Coach Bohl, a true mentor of mine, is very special,” Polasek said in the release. “I can’t wait to get to Laramie to see the first-class facilities and meet everyone in the program.”

Iowa led the Big Ten in red zone offense, ranked second in scoring and third in fewest tackles for loss allowed under Polasek. Polasek’s offensive line featured first-round NFL draft pick and now rookie Super Bowl champion Tristan Wirfs, who recently was named the highest graded player in Super Bowl LV by Pro Football Focus.

“A huge thank you to Kirk Ferentz for taking a shot on an offensive coach who had never coached the O-line,” Polasek said. “I’ve learned so much in my four years at Iowa, and I will forever be grateful. He taught me what is really important in this business and what is just noise.

“In my time at Iowa, I can honestly say that I learned something from him every day. Coach Ferentz and his staff exemplify what it is to be true professionals.”

Polasek enjoyed an offseason recruiting haul with one of the best offensive lines in the country, including three four-star and two three-star recruits.

The search for replacements will begin immediately.

“This is not a race and I have always viewed hiring as an intentional process to find the right person who can contribute to our culture and our program,” Ferentz said.

In addition, senior offensive lineman Mark Kallenberger will forgo his fifth season with the Hawkeyes and graduate with his degree this spring. Kallenberger was a three-year lettermen for the Hawkeyes, playing guard and tackle. He received honorable mention all-Big Ten recognition from league media.

“Mark has been a strong player and leader within our program,” Ferentz said. “I completely understand and respect his decision and wish him the very best.”

Comments: (319) 398-8387; leah.vann@thegazette.com

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