Kirk Ferentz: 'Realistic' for Alaric Jackson to return after Iowa's bye week — and other Hawkeyes injury updates

Dargan Southard
Hawk Central

IOWA CITY, Ia. — It's only Week 2, but Kirk Ferentz already had a list of injuries to run through at Tuesday's press conference. 

The biggest health concern is left tackle Alaric Jackson, who suffered a right knee sprain on the second drive of Saturday's 38-14 win over Miami (Ohio). Ferentz said Jackson will be sidelined for "the next two games for sure," and possibly a bit longer.

That means Iowa will be without Jackson for Saturday's Big Ten opener against Rutgers and next week's Cy-Hawk showdown. Iowa then has a bye week before facing Middle Tennessee State on Sept. 28. Ferentz said there's a chance Jackson could return then.  

"We'll see," Ferentz said. "I think it's realistic, but everybody heals differently. The good news is it doesn't look like we're looking at surgery. So that's a good thing. Hopefully, he goes a little faster than everybody hopes or thinks, that type of thing. But we can't count on him. We'll just see how it goes. But I think it's realistic to think he'll play this year for us."

Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz walks out of the tunnel before a NCAA non conference football game, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019, at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa.

As a result, the potential return of Cole Banwart couldn't come at a better time. The junior guard missed the season-opener with a foot injury, but Ferentz said Banwart has a "shot to return" against Rutgers.

It's not as promising news in the secondary. Backup defensive backs Julius Brents (knee) and Riley Moss (leg) are both going to miss significant time. Brents, who didn't play against the RedHawks, is "going to be (out) for a while." Moss, who was injured Saturday, is set to miss four to six weeks.           

Dargan Southard covers Iowa and UNI athletics, recruiting and preps for the Des Moines Register, and the Iowa City Press-Citizen. Email him at or follow him on Twitter at @Dargan_Southard.