Here's what Iowa football coach Kirk Ferentz said in his press conference ahead of the Illinois game
IOWA CITY — Kinnick Stadium's final appearance of the season is here.
No. 14 Iowa (8-2, 5-2 Big Ten Conference) is readying for Saturday's Senior Day showdown against Illinois (4-6, 3-4). Hawkeyes coach Kirk Ferentz spoke about the matchup and more during Tuesday's weekly press conference.
On the health front
"(Defensive back) Terry Roberts won't make it back," Ferentz said. "I don't think so. He hasn't really been able to hit full throttle yet. (Running back) Ivory Kelly-Martin might be able to do a little special teams, but both of those guys are still kind of in a holding pattern.
"(Quarterback) Spencer (Petras), I think has a chance to be fully healthy. He had two pretty good days of practice, so we'll see how it looks here this week and go from there."
On QB situation with Petras' health improving
"Alex (Padilla) has been running with the 1s," Ferentz said. "So we're just trying to get Spencer back in the groove a little bit. He's there mentally, obviously, just working through some missed time. And he's missed some throws he probably wouldn't otherwise. So we'll see how it goes, but we're really comfortable with both guys. It just means (Petras) taking all the 2s (reps). So he's gotten a lot of work done and looks good. Key thing was he wasn't sore today. He hasn't been tackled yet. That's another wild card. But he looks good, and we're hopefully gaining ground. I think we are.
"I'd say it's more accuracy (being affected by the shoulder injury) right now. He's missing that time. So I think that's probably the biggest thing, timing and accuracy. That's probably the biggest thing he needs to get back. A week ago, he couldn't throw the ball down the field. It's like a lot of medical things, day by day."
On Tyrone Tracy's (now-deleted) tweet of frustration
It's been a tough year for wide receiver Tyrone Tracy, who has just 15 catches for 106 yards and as many receiving TDs as rushing TDs.
Tracy voiced his frustration on Twitter on Sunday, tweeting, “Why have a Swiss Army knife and NOT use it to its full potential!!.” He later deleted the tweet.
"I think that's a young guy who wants to help the football team," Ferentz said. "I think it's his way of expressing it. It's kind of the way people express things nowadays, I've been told. I'm not going to try to understand that part of it, but I'm not that interested in understanding it either."
On the discussions with seniors potentially returning next season with their 'free' COVID year
"I made the rounds, touch and go, and gauged temperature during our bye week with guys where it'd be appropriate, Ferentz said. "We'll talk more specifically here once the season's over. There's all kinds of time in December to start thinking a little bit more concretely about that.
"It was more just getting the temperature back in October. We'll talk a little bit more in December. I think we've got room to do whatever. You kind of guesstimate what might happen or could happen (with guys coming back), either way. And we've been mindful of that as we've recruited too. So I think we've got a pretty good plan in place."
Dargan Southard covers Iowa and UNI athletics, recruiting and preps for the Des Moines Register, HawkCentral.com and the Iowa City Press-Citizen. Email him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter at @Dargan_Southard.