IOWA CITY, Iowa – Four days and counting.
That is all that remains until the Iowa football team will face Miami of Ohio in the 2019 season opener on Saturday at Kinnick Stadium.
Kirk Ferentz and his assistant coaches and players will make history on Saturday as it will be the first time that Iowa has opened the season under the lights at Kinnnick Stadium.
The game will start at 6:35 p.m. and will be televised on Fox Sports1.
Select members of the Iowa team met with the media on Tuesday in the first weekly press conference of the season. They addressed multiple topics, including the thrill of playing under the lights and the importance of getting the season off to a successful start.
Iowa is ranked 20th in the Associated Press preseason poll and is coming off a 9-4 season that was capped by a 27-22 victory over Mississippi State in the Outback Bowl.
Iowa has plenty of individual star power with players such junior defensive end A.J. Epenesa, junior offensive tackles Alaric Jackson and Tristan Wirfs and senior quarterback Nate Stanley, who will start for a third consecutive season.
The Hawkeyes are a heavy favorite to win on Saturday and have a 4-0 advantage in the series with Miami of Ohio.
The 64-year old Ferentz is also entering his 21st season as the Iowa head coach, which is a school record, and is the longest-tenured head coach in college football.
Here are multiple video interviews featuring the players from Tuesday's press conference, including junior receiver IhmirSmith-Marsette, who talked about becoming a better leader and about his growth on and off the field.
Smith-Marsette had a meeting with Kirk Ferentz in February in which they talked about the things that Smith-Marsette needed to do to become a better leader and a more focused football player.
Their conversation has paid dividends, considering Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz said at media day that he has been as pleased with Smith-Marsette's performance in practice as with any player on the team.
Mekhi Sargent talks about being more comfortable as an Iowa football player
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Nate Stanley addresses multiple topics with media on Tuesday
Ihmir Smith-Marsette talks about growing up
Levi Paulson addresses multiple topics including playing with his brother
Geno Stone talks about Saturday's season opener and the new challenges at safety
Djimon Colbert talks about the differences between the 4-3 and 4-2-5 alignments