The Iowa Hawkeyes host the Penn State Nittany Lions in a crucial Big Ten showdown this weekend. To mark the occasion, Iowa has invited a special VIP to serve as the honorary captain.
On Thursday, the Iowa football program announced that former starting quarterback Ricky Stanzi had been named honorary captain for the game. He was Iowa’s starter from 2008 to 2010 and set numerous milestones during his time with the Hawkeyes.
Stanzi went 26-9 as a starter and was the first quarterback in Iowa history to win three bowl games as a starter.
Incidentally, three of his 26 wins came against the Nittany Lions.
“Love it or leave it!”
— Hawkeye Football (@HawkeyeFootball) October 10, 2019
The crowning achievement of Ricky Stanzi’s college career was his 2009 campaign. That year, Iowa went 11-2 overall and finished ranked No. 7 after beating Georgia Tech in the Orange Bowl. It was their highest ranked finish since 1960 and only their second 11-win season ever.
Stanzi finished his college football career third in passing yards and touchdowns in Hawkeyes history.
After his senior season, Stanzi was drafted in the Kansas City Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft. However, he never threw a pass in five NFL seasons.
He briefly revived his football career in 2017 with the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders, but was released in 2018.