Harty: Mr. Optimist, Mr. Pessimist weigh in before media day

By Pat Harty
Iowa defensive lineman Carl Davis (71) and the Hawkeyes take the field prior to kickoff against LSU in the Outback Bowl on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, in Tampa, Florida.

Original publish date: August 3, 2014

With all the hype surrounding the 2014 Iowa football team, these two antagonists couldn't resist having a debate with media day being held Monday.

This debate was different than all their previous ones, though, because they finally agreed on something at the end.

Mr. Optimist: Iowa's defensive line, which features senior tackles Carl Davis and Louis Trinca-Pasat, should be a disruptive force this season.

Mr. Pessimist: It had better be nothing less, given the situation at linebacker where all three starters have to be replaced.

Mr. Optimist: Iowa's second game of the season against Mid-American Conference member Ball State looks very winnable on paper, although David Letterman's alma mater did win 10 games last season.

Mr. Pessimist: Iowa's previous four games against MAC opponents also looked winnable on paper, but the Hawkeyes lost two of them.

Mr. Optimist: The best thing about Iowa's 2014 schedule from a competitive standpoint is that Ohio State, Michigan State, Michigan and Penn State aren't on it.

Mr. Pessimist: The worst thing about Iowa's 2014 schedule from an entertainment standpoint is that Purdue, Indiana and Illinois are on it.

Mr. Optimist: Nebraska coach Bo Pelini deserves praise for embracing his parody twitter account in which he's pictured holding a cat in order to show his softer side. His decision to bring his cat to Nebraska's spring game in April also was a huge success from a public relations standpoint.

Mr. Pessimist: I just hope for the cat's sake that it still has its claws for those dreary autumn days when Nebraska loses and Daddy comes home seething.

Mr. Optimist: University of Iowa officials deserve praise for trying to figure out ways to increase student ticket sales for football, including making student tickets available to the public as of Aug. 1.

Mr. Pessimist: The now-on-hold promotion in which free tuition was to be raffled off to five UI students who purchase football tickets seems sort of desperate and more in line for "The Price Is Right" game show.

Mr. Optimist: A compromise appears to have been reached between fans and security at KinnickStadium with both sides now doing a better job of co-existing on gameday.

Mr. Pessimist: In other words, fans are no longer considered guilty until proven innocent.

Mr. Optimist: James Daniels, a three-star center from Warren, Ohio, is believed to be the first Ohio native since Calvin Jones in the early 1950s to commit to Iowa despite having a long-standing scholarship offer from the home-state Buckeyes.

Mr. Pessimist: Isn't that supposed to be my line?

Mr. Optimist: Iowa returns eight of its top-10 receivers from last season.

Mr. Pessimist: Iowa is one of just three Big Ten teams that doesn't return a player who had at least 400 receiving yards last season.

Mr. Optimist: This is an exciting time for the Big Ten Conference, with Maryland and Rutgers now officially on board as the league's 13th and 14th members.

Mr. Pessimist: You must watch C-SPAN or tapes of Iowa basketball under former coach ToddLickliter for excitement.

Mr. Optimist: Being an Iowa fan won't stop me from congratulating Iowa State for landing the top football recruit from in-state in each of the past three years.

Mr. Pessimist: Iowa State could have its next recruiting class land on the moon and nobody outside of Ames would care.

Mr. Optimist: One of the highlights of Iowa football media day is having legendary radio personality Bob Brooks and his giant tape recorder on hand to record the annual event.

Mr. Pessimist: This marks the first time I don't have a response because there is no downside to Bob Brooks reporting on his beloved Hawkeyes.