By Pat Harty
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Redshirt freshman quarterback Deuce Hogan was the first player to commit to the Iowa football team’s 2020 recruiting class.
The Texas native then helped recruit other players to join the class, and that made Hogan very popular with Hawkeye fans, who followed him closely on social media.
He was also a four-star recruit from a state rich in talent, so there was reason to be believe that Hogan could be Iowa’s next great quarterback.
But that will never happen.
Hogan only appeared briefly in one game this season after having been redshirted last season, and now the 6-foot-4, 212-pounder has entered the NCAA transfer portal as the new broke on Tuesday.
“It’s unfortunate,” said Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz. “We don’t want to lose any players. We’ve had a couple choose to transfer out. Usually when players have that thought, my first question would be, have you thought about it, spent a lot of time thinking about it, who have you talked to, those types of things. Then the second question is, do you need more time to make a decision?
“And then the only other thing I’d add to it is with the quarterback situation, it’s a little different as we know. I know the portal has changed the world a little bit. But I’ve always looked at quarterbacks separately.”
Hogan isn’t the first Iowa quarterback under Kirk Ferentz to enter the transfer portal nor will he be the last.
Quarterbacks are transferring at an alarming rate now that it’s easier to go through the process and they can play immediately under the new rules.
Jake Rudock transferred from Iowa to Michigan shortly after the 2014 season and would go on to be the starter for Michigan during 2015 season.
Cody Sokol also transferred from Iowa to Louisiana Tech in the summer of 2014 and would go on to start for Louisiana Tech as a senior.
Tyler Wiegers also left Iowa in 2018 and transferred to Eastern Michigan in his home state where he started as a graduate student.
“I’ve talked to Deuce about this, we’ve had three guys who left here, did well at their next stops,” Kirk Ferentz said. “My guess is he’ll do the same thing.
“But the quarterback position is unique. It’s unique in recruiting, as you know. They commit earlier, typically, because there are limited seats. I know they used to call them the point guard in basketball.”
Hogan’s departure means that Iowa now has three quarterbacks on scholarship heading into Saturday’s Big Ten Championship game against Michigan in Indianapolis.
Junior Spencer Petras is listed as the starter for Saturday’s game, while sophomore Alex Padilla is the backup after having started the final three regular-season games when Petras was recovering from a shoulder injury.
The third quarterback on scholarship is Ohio native Joey Labas.
Kirk Ferentz joked after the Nebraska game that he might have stayed in Iowa City if Hogan would’ve had to start against Nebraska due to several players, including Petras and Padilla, having been ill with the flu during the week.
Ferentz now regrets having said that.
“I brought it up to him. In retrospect I wish I had not named the name,” Kirk Ferentz said. “In the team meeting, that might be — hopefully everybody laughed, that type of thing, because the bottom line, I’m not going to coach a player through the media or say something that’s hurtful or malicious towards a player. To me, it’s not appropriate. I did share that with the team on Sunday, that exact point.
“I wanted to make sure I understood, if I have an issue with any player, we’ll have a private visit. That’s where that will be, because I don’t like to air that kind of stuff out in public. It was by no means that way, but in retrospect I wish I hadn’t said it, quite frankly.”
The only time Hogan made the depth chart at Iowa was when Petras was injured. Hogan was listed as the backup behind Padilla, but Hogan never saw any action.
Hogan is the fourth Iowa player to enter the transfer portal since the 2021 season started. The others are receivers Quavon Matthews and Desmond Hutson and tight end Josiah Miamen.