November 10, 2007

TES - 2007 Hawkeye Football Game Notes Week 11

Iowa’s Record:  5-5, 3-4 Big Ten
Iowa’s Rankings
USA Today:
ESPN Power 16: 
ESPNU Allstate: 

2007 Iowa Football Schedule
September 1st Iowa @ Northern Illinois WIN 16-3
September 8th Iowa v. Syracuse WIN 35-0
September 15th Iowa @ Iowa State Loss 15-13
September 22nd Iowa @ Wisconsin Loss 17-13
September 29th Iowa v. Indiana Loss 38-20
October 6th Iowa @ Penn State Loss 27-7
October 13th Iowa v. Illinois WIN 10-6
October 20th Iowa @ Purdue Loss 31-6
October 27th Iowa v. Michigan State WIN 34-27 2OT
November 3rd Iowa @ Northwestern WIN 28-17
November 10th Iowa v. Minnesota 12:05 PM, Big Ten
November 17th Iowa v. Western Michigan 3:35 PM, Big Ten

November 10th, 2007: Iowa Hawkeyes v. Minnesota Golden Gophers 1-9, 0-6 Big Ten
Prior Games: 100, Minnesota leads 59-39-2
Last Game: 2006, Iowa 21, Minnesota 34

Current Turnover Margin: +11

Depth Chart for this week:

Use above in conjunction with –

Iowa City PD Arrest Blotter:

Game Watch: ‘The Best Game Watch Outside Of Kinnick.’
BLONDIES SPORTS 212 West 79th, (Broadway/Amsterdam).

1 train to 79th street, then half a block east.  Several parking garages are nearby.
NOTE: If sitting on bar stools/standing for 3 hours is not ideal for you, we will be reserving a couple tables on the restaurant side of Blondies.  Call the bar at 212 362-4360 to reserve table space.  We will not always have Hawkeye audio on the restaurant side, however.

Last Week: Northwestern
Well once again the Hawks sleepwalked their way through quarter one (three 3 and outs, netting 12 yards.  But that’s 13 more yards than they got in Q1 last week!).  Meanwhile the defense was getting torched for 196 yards.  Offense did the same for much of Q2, finally waking up at the 2:10 mark after the defense stuffed the Wildcats on a 3 and out from the Northwestern 3 yard line.  The resulting punt gave the Hawks the ball at the 40 and Jake woke up, drove them down the field, and hit Stross for a 20 yard touchdown.  52 air yards on the drive and the Hawks found themselves down by just 7.  That we were not down by much more was quite surprising, they way things looked in the 1st.
Course, the Hawks scored too soon.  Signor knocks the kickoff out of bounds with 40 ticks left and 5 plays later the Wildcats are kicking a last second field goal to stretch the lead to 10.  Freshman lineman Adrian Clayborn (really coming along – big potential in this kid) swatted away the kick and the Hawks went into the locker room where coach Ferentz lit into them for the entire half time.

It must have worked, as for the second week in a row, the Hawks allow just a field goal in the final two quarters and once again the offense overcame a two touchdown deficit. 

The Hawks opened the 2nd with a 10 play drive that resulted in a Young 16 yard td and the Wildcats had been caught.  Northwestern then regained the lead on a field goal that resulted (stalled the drive) after they were flagged for an offensive pass interference call (a miracle, due to the ticky tack calls the Hawks had been flagged for up til then).  But from that point, the 6:52 mark of the 3rd, the Iowa defense simply took over.

From there, the Northwestern possessions:
  1. Punt.
  2. Pick, Humpal, at the Hawk 27, killing a scoring chance.
  3. Punt
  4. Punt, after the Jake fumble giving the Cats the ball at the Iowa 32. A hold, then a sack, forced them out of field goal range.
  5. Pick, Fletcher (I called it! Thanks Bradley).
  6. Pick, Godfrey, resulting in final, nail-driving touchdown.
  7. Punt
  8. 4th down, game over.

Domination.  Assisted, again, by the offense moving the ball and the special teams generally making Northwestern drive the field.  Donahue added a 75 yard punt to his stats this week and if he’s good to unload a 65 yard, plus, kick every week I think the kid is going to be pretty darn good over the next 3 years.  Maybe even give a run at Roby’s 45.4 yard per punt career record, though the old timer in me would kind of like to see Reggie hang onto the record forever.  Anyway, Jason Baker did us well but to have a punter in the Black and Gold making us think of Roby is certainly interesting.

It should be noted, the mood in the bar was a bit seething as the Hawks came out throwing for much of the game.  The coaches must have seen something in practice (and as expected, the Cats were stacking the line) to make them go that route. In the end, it worked.  Jake 21-36, 299, and a score. Again no picks, just the one fumble on the sack.  A well managed game but please Jake, learn to hit those wide open screen and fullback-in-the-flat passes!  Our poor fullback never gets the ball!  He had open field in front of him on that 3rd and 1 play!  DJK 9 catches for 119, Stross just 3 but 91 yards, including the 53 yard strike that set up the go ahead touchdown. Maybe the Iowa passing game is indeed ready to mesh with the Iowa running game.  If so, it should be a whole lot of fun to watch the game this Saturday.

This Week: Minnesota
Because my oh my are these Golden Rodents bad.  To date, they have one win, over Miami (yeah right – Ohio) and have lost to such schools as Bowling Green, FAU, and North Dakota State.  That’s right.  They get us this week and the Badgers next, to finish a perfect 0-8 in the Big Ten.  They are in fact the only Big Ten team that can’t make a bowl game.

They give up 38 points per so this could be just the kind of Saturday the Hawkeyes need to put the passing game, running game, defense, and special teams together to once again blow somebody out.  Factor in the Gophers rank dead last (country) in yards allowed (549), and also last in sacks made, at less than one per game.  Toss in their -13 turnover difference (rank, #112 – there are 119 teams in Div. 1), and it all adds up to a decisive Hawkeye victory.  I am thinking something like 42-17. 

The only good thing you can say about this football team is that their punter leads the Big Ten in yards per punt, average.  Long kicks give the Iowa return team room to operate, so perhaps we’ll get a punt return td this week.

The Hawks better rout the Rodents, as I am making the trip back to Kinnick, and really don’t want to see anything like a ‘good game’.  We turned the ball over 5 times in our loss their last year, and that broke the 5 game winning streak that included the glorious road game goal post tear down in 2002.  Let this be game 1 of a new extended victory streak, keeping Floyd back home in Iowa City well into the next decade.

That’s enough on the Gophers, as the Hawks have done the improbable and can now start to think about post season plans.  The Champs Sports (Orlando) and Insight (Tempe) Bowls are both high on the Hawkeyes, and our legions of fans that make the bowl trips.  A win Saturday and another next week in the comfort of Kinnick should have us in either nice warm city in late December.

Take a peak at the Big Ten standings below:

As you can see, a win over the Gophers will have the Hawks 4-4 in the Big Ten.  Let’s look at the teams ahead of us.

Illinois – game Saturday at Ohio State, loss, then host Northwestern, hard to say. 4-4 or 5-3.
Penn State – at Spartans next week, toss up, could be 5-3, or 4-4.
Wisconsin – host Michigan, then play Gophers.  Likely 4-4.
Purdue – host Spartans, at Indiana.  Toss up, both. Likely 4-4.

So the Hawks could end up as high as tied for 3rd, but more likely a tie for 4th. Seems a long shot but stranger things have happened, like when everything fell into place the last two weeks in 2004 to give us the Big Ten title.  Considering where this season has been, 3rd or 4th, or even 5th would certainly give us momentum and optimism heading into the 2008 season.

The hoop Hawkeyes kick off the season for real Friday night against Idaho State (nope, don’t know where that is – Ohio?). I tried watching the Simpson game on the Big Ten Network web site but it was struggling to ‘stream’ and unwatchable.  So looking forward to seeing how we look, though without Tony Freeman (foot, out 4-6 weeks) it might be a bit hard to watch.  Regardless, being there in Carver Friday night and Kinnick Saturday morning will be a nice dose of live Hawkeye action.

In other news, the Iowa Field Hockey team defended their Big Ten Tournament title by knocking off top seed Michigan in the finals.  The gals set the all time tourney scoring record this year due to their rout in the quarter finals (think it was 8-1).  They now enter the NCAA tourney as one of the top 5 teams in the country, and looking to bring a national title back to Iowa City.  They did it in 1986, and lost in the title game 3 times (all to Old Dominion) in the decade around that.  Any title in any sport helps us in that NACDA Cup (formerly Sears Cup) so good luck Hawkeyes!!!

All right, for those of you who are not Iowa City bound we are back on Big Ten Network this week – which for those you local Hawks probably means you must go to the bar to see it.  Even though I am out, the bag of Hawkeye flags will be there so the bar will be decked out like every other week!  And we are back on the Big Ten Network the following week for the final game, that one at 3:30.  I’ll scout out the other games for the weekend and advise next week if you will want to show up early that Saturday. 

Have a great week plus gang and we’ll see you at the bar for game #12!

Why You Should Watch The Iowa Games At Blondies Sports
  1. A room full of Iowans, and Quasi-Iowans.
  2. Iowa games in glorious audio – we control the bar side stereo.  That means you hear the game.  And the fight song.  ON IOWA.  The Beer Song.  Maybe a little Hawkeye radio audio from past dramatic games.
  3. A bar decked out in Hawkeye banners, flags, signs, etc.  Like the Sports Column…minus the attitude. New NYC Hawk banners for 2007!
  4. It is a bar – meaning that once the game kicks off, you don’t have to drink Coke.  That is, unless you want to. 
  5. Speaking of audio…actual Hawkeye Marching Band alumni have been known to break out the brass and start jamming.
  6. Prizes.  From time to time, there will be raffles of cool Hawkeye gear.
  7. James the Bartender is back – again in 2007. Our own personal bartender. 
  8. Should the Hawks lose, you don’t have to drown your sorrows by yourself.  Pain is a drink best shared with friends.
  9. Maybe the best chicken wings in the City.
  10. It’s economical – the more fun you have at the bar, the less you can have on Saturday night.  Thus you save money on Saturday nights.



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