If Kirk Ferentz is headed to Michigan, it's news to nearly everybody, including Iowa athletic director Gary Barta.
"There is nothing new regarding Kirk ... no news," Barta wrote in an email to the Iowa City Press-Citizen. A clause in Ferentz's contract stipulates that he must notify the athletic department before discussing any opportunities elsewhere.
Speculation surrounding Ferentz becoming Michigan's coach started almost immediately after Lloyd Carr announced he was stepping down. Former Des Moines Register sportswriter Ron Maly was among the first to brush off talk of any interest in Ferentz by Michigan. "Would Michigan hire a coach to beat Ohio State who can't beat Iowa State?" Maly wrote in his blog.
But the respected M Go Blog, which first broke the news about Carr's retirement, continues to suggest Ferentz is in the mix. That has spread to message boards, including this interesting post saying the reason Carr stepped down was because he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease several years ago. (Carr has been medicated, according to the post, and for the most part has been fine.) The post also suggests that Carr and Louisiana State's Les Miles, thought to be near the top of Michigan's coaching list, were not the best of friends.
"Miles’ and Carr’s dislike for each other played out on the recruiting trail for years. Miles was allegedly one of the first coaches telling kids about Carr’s health and impending retirement and that was 4 years ago. The dislike spiraled and spiraled.
"This is what Carr meant in his resignation speech when he said that certain issues would be left on the recruiting trails [it was directed at Miles]."