Iowa football scores tracker: Hawkeyes far behind pace after shutout as team needs to score 300 points in 2023

Iowa has long been known as a program focused on winning with elite defense and special teams under tenured coach Kirk Ferentz. The results have been consistent, if nothing else: In 24 seasons under Ferentz, the Hawkeyes have won an average of nearly eight games per year — oftentimes with middling offensive output. 

Iowa was particularly abysmal on offense during the 2022 season, however, finishing 123rd nationally while averaging 17.7 points and 156.7 yards passing per game. Even worse, Iowa finished 130th — out of 131 FBS teams — in total offense at 256.1 yards per game. 

In any other situation, such lowly numbers would almost assuredly result in a staffing change. Complicating matters is that Kirk’s son, Brian Ferentz, is the team’s offensive coordinator. In the face of numerous calls for change, the younger Ferentz signed a revised one-year contract in February reducing his salary and adding performance incentives, putting pressure on the offense to improve. 

In order for Brian Ferentz to return to his previous two-year rolling contract, it has been mandated by Iowa’s administration that the Hawkeyes score at least 25 points per game — by any means, including defense and special teams — during the 2023 season. (Additionally, Iowa must reach seven wins, including a potential bowl game.) If Ferentz fails to meet either of the two goals, his contract will officially terminate on June 30, 2024.

Iowa was running well enough towards this goal through the first three weeks, sitting 3.34% ahead of pace after a rousing 41-point scoring affair against Western Michigan. And then disaster struck in Week 4 when it visited Penn State. Not only did the Hawkeyes fall off pace, they failed to score a single point against the Nittany Lions.

Even though Iowa was only projected by SportsLine to score 15 points in the game, it posted a goose egg. As such, the Hawkeyes are now nearly 5% off pace for the season. They have only scored 85 points through four games (-15 to average) and are now projected to score just 262 on the season (-38 to goal).

CBS Sports will be tracking Iowa’s points per game throughout the season while calculating whether the Hawkeyes are on track to meet the threshold necessary for the team’s offensive coordinator to keep his job. Let’s break it down in greater detail.

2023 Iowa football schedule, points scored

Projected points via SportsLine | Goal = 300 points (25 per game)

Utah State


31 (-7)

-1 (96%)

8.00% -0.33%

Iowa State


18 (+2)

-5 (80%)

14.67% -2.00%

Western Michigan


33 (+8)

+16 (164%)

28.34% +3.34%

Penn State


15 (-15)

-25 (0%)

28.34% -4.99%

Michigan State















Total 85 262 (adj.) 95.01%

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