Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz addressed the media on Tuesday afternoon to discuss his team’s 0-2 start and the Hawkeyes’ upcoming game vs. Michigan State.

Right off the top, Ferentz acknowledged that they just have to play better to come away with a win. Iowa has lost its first two games by a combined five points to Purdue and Northwestern.

Ferentz added that the coaching staff is trying to get the players to focus on “the remaining 80 percent” of the schedule.

Ferentz also said he’s not worried about the season slipping away despite the 0-2 start. He referenced 2008 when the Hawkeyes lost their first three Big Ten games of the season. That team ended up winning six of its final seven contests, including a victory over South Carolina in the Outback Bowl.

There’s also the matter of receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette, who was arrested shortly after Iowa’s loss to Northwestern last weekend. Ferentz called it an “uncharacteristic” mistake by Smith-Marsette, who is suspended for this week’s game.

However, Smith-Marsette has been practicing with the scout team this week and it’s possible he’ll be back for Iowa’s Week 4 clash with Minnesota.

Ferentz also touched on COVID-19 protocols, the emergence of Daviyon Nixon and a few other topics: