Report Says Iowa Football Culture Must Change
Yesterday, the rest of the world got a peek into the Iowa Hawkeye football program. Or at least the 'old' Iowa program. The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that the independent review of Iowa football released yesterday confirmed complaints from Black former players that some coaches were racially intolerant.
Much of the criticism was over the program's 'Iowa Way' mantra. Many Black athletes said that it didn't encourage individualism. The review of the program was done by the Husch Blackwell firm. It was commissioned after several former Iowa players took to social media back in June to voice their complaints about the program.
University of Iowa President Bruce Harreld said in a statement yesterday, "I have read the report, and it is clear that the climate and culture must and will change within our football program." Harreld went on to say that the school has identified many issues, and will continue with the process of making change. The Gazette reports that Husch Blackwell also provided the school with four personnel reports related to current and former employees. Those reports will be part of their confidential records.
The Gazette reports that many of the problems surrounded the 'Iowa Way' philosophy. In mandated uniformity and discouraged individualism. Many Black players said that because of this they found it difficult to adjust to the program. They felt like they were being molded into a stereotypical midwest white football player. The report did give a positive review of Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz. Most players interview gave Ferentz positive reviews on his leadership of the program.
The report also said that conditions have improved since the dismissal of strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle.