All-Ferentz Team: Defensive Back

July 12, 2019

Written by Rob Howe

Hawkeye Nation

OFFENSIVE LINE, KICKER & PUNTER, LINEBACKER, RECEIVER, TIGHT END, DEFENSIVE LINE, RUNNING BACK & FULLBACK

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Phil Parker has a way with the secondary. Iowa’s long time assistant finds overlooked talent in recruiting and then coaches them up.

The Hawkeyes have produced four Big Ten Defensive Backs of the Year during the last seven seasons. Ohio State hasn’t had any.

When you review this list, you’ll note that Tyler Sash was the only player on it with another Power 5 offer. He held one from Iowa State.

As you would imagine, picking the top players in the backend for the last 20 years proved challenging. Our all-Ferentz team faced it head on, however.

You can see who’s voting and the methodology behind the project HERE.

CORNERBACK

First Team

Desmond King

Skinny: One of the shining examples of Parker’s eye for talent, this Detroit product had no other Power 5 offers. He stepped in as a true freshman and never looked back. He twice earned all-American honors. He captured the Thorpe and Tatum Awards, and was the Big Ten’s Defensive back of the Year in ’15. His 14 career interceptions rank fourth on Iowa’s all-time list.

Micah Hyde

Skinny: Like King, Iowa put forth Hyde’s lone Power 5 offer. He rewarded the Hawkeyes by winning the Big Ten Defensive Back of the Year award in ’12, when they went 4-8. The Ohio product started every game during his final three seasons, registering eight interceptions and locking down his side of the field.

Second Team

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Josh Jackson

Skinny: It says something about the strength of this position at Iowa when the ’17 Big Ten Defensive Back of the Year lands on the second team. He impacted the program greatly in his one year as a starter, earning unanimous all-American honors before leaving early for the NFL. His eight interceptions that year are tied for the most in a season at Iowa.

Jovon Johnson

Skinny: Not to be outdone, Johnson’s 17 career picks place him third in program history. Like the other guys on this list, the Erie, PA product had a flair for the dramatic. A four-year starter and all-Big Ten selection, the Hawkeyes won 39 games during Johnson’s time (’02-’05).

VOTING

Free Safety

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First Team

Amani Hooker

Skinny: Forever to be remembered as the man who spawned a movement. Hooker helped Parker create the Cash position last season. In doing so, he was named the Big Ten Defensive Back of the Year from the hybrid LB-DB spot. He boasted a unique combination of strong coverage skills to go with the physicality to support the run. As a senior, he led the team in interceptions (4) and pass break-ups (7), while ranking second in tackles (65).

Second Team

Sean Considine

Skinny: The lone former walk-on among the members of the all-Ferentz secondary, Considine helped the Hawkeyes win Big Ten championships in ’02 and ’04. He picked off six passes and excelled on special teams, blocking five kicks during his career.

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VOTING

Strong Safety

First Team

Bob Sanders

Skinny: Credited by Ferentz and his assistants with playing the biggest role in establishing the current culture at Iowa, Sanders only operated in one speed – full-go. “The Bullet” punished offensive players and let them know often that playing the Hawkeyes would hurt. He earned first-team all-Big Ten honors three times and was a second-team all-American as a senior. He finished his career with 348 tackles, 30 pass break-ups, 16 tackles for loss, and seven interceptions.

Second Team

Tyler Sash

Skinny: Gone way too soon, the Oskaloosa native provided Iowa fans with many great memories during his time. He started the final 34 games of his career and his 13 picks rank sixth on the school’s all-time list. His 392 interception return yards are tops. He was named first-team all-Big Ten for his final two campaigns.

VOTING

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