IOWA CITY, Iowa - - Former University of Iowa quarterback Ricky Stanzi will serve as honorary captain when Iowa hosts Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday (6:44 p.m., ABC).
Stanzi was a three-year letterman (2008-10) for the Hawkeyes, starting at quarterback in 35 games over his final three seasons. He posted a 26-9 record as Iowa’s starting quarterback, including a 10-1 record in 2009. The Hawkeyes won their first nine games in 2009 before Stanzi was injured in the first half of a loss to Northwestern. After missing the final two games of the regular season, Stanzi returned to lead Iowa’s victory in the 2010 Orange Bowl.
Stanzi is the only Iowa quarterback (and just third Big Ten quarterback) to lead his team to three bowl wins, as he engineered wins in the 2009 Outback Bowl (31-10 over South Carolina), 2010 Orange Bowl (24-14 over Georgia Tech) and 2010 Insight Bowl (27-24 over Missouri). Stanzi started three games against Penn State during his career, with the Hawkeyes winning all three.
A native of Mentor, Ohio, Stanzi ranks third in career passing yards (7,377) and total offense (7,373) and is fourth in touchdown passes (56), having recently been passed by current senior Nate Stanley. As a senior, he set an Iowa single-season record for passing efficiency (157.63). He set Iowa’s record with a touchdown pass in 21 consecutive games.
As a senior, Stanzi was one of five finalists for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, and a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien and Maxwell awards. Stanzi was selected for the Senior Bowl following the 2010 season.
Stanzi was named a permanent team captain as a junior and senior and earned the Roy J. Carver Most Valuable Player Award in offense in each of his final two seasons. He was recognized with the Hayden Fry “Extra Heartbeat” Award as a senior.
Stanzi was drafted by Kansas City in the fifth round of the NFL Draft and was in the NFL for five seasons.
Stanzi will accompany the Iowa captains to midfield for Saturday’s pregame coin toss. He will also be with the Hawkeyes in the locker room before and after the game.