Iowa Athletics amends contract of Hawkeye football offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz

The amended contract decreases his salary by $50,000 and adds Designated Performance Objectives for the 2023 season.


Grace Smith

Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz speaks during a joint coaches press conference for the 2022 TransPerfect Music City Bowl at Gaylord Resort and Convention Center in Nashville on Friday, Dec. 30, 2022.

Chloe Peterson, Sports Editor

Iowa athletic director Gary Barta announced Monday that the Hawkeye football program has amended offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz’s contract for the 2023 season.

Iowa football had one of the worst offensive seasons of the Kirk Ferentz era in 2022, averaging just 17.7 points per game — 123rd in the FBS. Iowa ranked second-to-last in total offense with just 251.6 yards per game.

Kirk Ferentz stayed committed to his son and offensive coordinator, however, in a press conference on Feb. 1.

“It’s not much fun, certainly, to win eight games,” Kirk Ferentz said. “That’s no easy trick when you score 17.8 a game. That’s not easy. But I’m optimistic. I think I know the causes, as I covered, for our challenges this year, and we’ve taken steps already in terms of addressing it.

“I think we have the right coaches in place, history would prove that,” Kirk Ferentz added. “I think we’ve seen success with this coaching staff, and plan on moving forward. I think we’re prime to have a good year.”

Iowa’s 8-5 record in 2022 was its worst winning percentage since the 2017 season.

Barta, who is Brian Ferentz’s direct supervisor because of nepotism laws in Iowa, said conversations about the offensive coordinator’s role is ongoing in a press conference on Feb. 1.

“The conversation started right where Kirk took ownership, and that is obviously, offensively, the performance that we had last year is is not going to cut it,” Barta said. “It’s not acceptable for any anybody involved. Then we had deeper conversations and I’ve had conversations with Brian about my expectations going forward.”

Brian Ferentz will take a $50,000 pay cut, from $900,000 to $850,000, Barta officially announced Monday.

Barta also removed the two-year rolling extension clause from Brian Ferentz’s contract. Previously, Brian Ferentz’s contract automatically extended for one-year periods on July 1 of each year.

Now, Brian Ferentz’s terms of employment are from Feb. 1, 2023 through June 30, 2024, according to an amendment to the contract document. If Ferentz meets his Designated Performance Objectives for the 2023 season, the contract will return to the two-year rolling agreement. Brian Ferentz will also receive a $112,500 bonus, and his salary will be set at $925,000.

Brian Ferentz’s performance objectives include an average of at least 25 points per game and at least seven wins in the 2023 season, including any regular season or bowl games. In the 2022 season, 64 of the 131 FBS teams were above both marks.

Iowa has averaged over 25 points per game in four of the six seasons Brian Ferentz has been offensive coordinator. The Hawkeyes averaged 28.2 points per game in 2017, 31.2 in 2018, 25.8 in 2019, 31.8 in 2020, and 23.4 in 2021.

The Hawkeye defense also scored an uncharacteristically high number of points in 2022. According to @HawkeyeGameFilm on Twitter, Iowa’s defense accounted for 24.99 percent of the Hawkeyes’ points in the 2022 season — the highest percentage in the Kirk Ferentz era. The Hawkeye defense has only accounted for more than 10 percent of Iowa’s scoring in six seasons since 2001.


The contract does not specify if all 25 points need to come from the offensive side of the ball. An Iowa spokesperson confirmed to Sports Illustrated’s Richard Johnson, however, the points per game benchmark is “any points scored,” including offense, defense, and special teams. Iowa’s defense scored six defensive touchdowns and two safeties in 2022, while the Hawkeye offense had seven total passing touchdowns and 12 rushing touchdowns in 2022.


Scoring 25 points per game in the 2022 season would have put Iowa at 85th out of 131 FBS teams in points per game. Kirk Ferentz pointed out in his Feb. 1 press conference that the Hawkeyes are 55-3 in the last eight years when they average 25 points per game.

The contract amendment states if these performance objectives are not met, Brian Ferentz’s contract will terminate on June 30, 2024.