- Adam Rittenberg, ESPN Staff Writer
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My headline is inaccurate, as Iowa didn't exactly hold a spring game or even a full scrimmage Saturday at Kinnick Stadium. The Des Moines Register's Randy Peterson called it a "Spring Whatever" -- I like that.
Anyway, the Hawkeyes wrapped up spring ball and here's a snapshot at what went down Saturday.
Quotable: "The best thing that happened today, other than one hamstring injury, is we didn't have any injuries. Our issues were coming into the spring with surgeries. That's why things can be ugly in spring. We have 6-8 guys that should be in our two deep that did not work but this spring but will be ready in June." -- coach Kirk Ferentz
Iowa is looking for a No. 2 receiver to join Marvin McNutt, and one appeared to emerge Saturday. Junior Keenan Davis had an impressive practice/scrimmage, making several electrifying catches, including one over cornerback Shaun Prater that went for 25 yards. "It's his time," Ferentz said. "He needs to play like a starter. He's certainly more than capable. It's his time to go." The Hawkeyes had been hopeful Davis would move into the No. 2 role, and his effort Saturday was an encouraging sign.
Fan favorite A.J. Derby made a move this spring to draw even with John Wienke for the No. quarterback spot. Derby turned in a strong performance Saturday, unofficially completing 9 of 11 passes for 115 yards. Wienke, meanwhile, tossed two interceptions in the scrimmage. The athletic Derby long has been considered a candidate to play elsewhere, but he's solidifying himself as an option at quarterback. "We see him as a quarterback, that's what he sees himself as and we’re on board with that 100 percent," Ferentz said. "It's not like we've got an eight-deep at quarterback. We've got three guys out there right now, and the way we protected during the spring at times, we may need eight quarterbacks."
There weren't any official stats from the scrimmage, but media reports noted reserve running backs Jason White and De'Andre Johnson looked decent. White and Johnson took most of the reps Saturday. "Jason White has really made some strides and improved," Ferentz said. "De'Andre Johnson has miles to go, but right now you can see he looks more like what we hoped he’d look like. He’s healthy now and moving around a little, but he's got a lot to learn."