September 26, 2013

2013 IOWA FOOTBALL - WEEK 5: IOWA @ MINNESOTA


Sedge’s Hawkeye Game Notes - 2013 Edition
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Iowa’s Record: 3-1, 0-0 Big Ten, 0-0 B1G Legends
Iowa’s Rankings:
AP:
USA Today:
BCS:
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2013 IOWA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE*

August 31st v. Northern Illinois, loss 30-27
September 7th v. Missouri State, WIN 28-14
September 14th @ Iowa State, WIN 27-21
September 21st v. Western Michigan, WIN 59-3
September 28th, @ •Minnesota, 3:35 pm, ABC/ESPN2  *ESPN2 in NYC
October 5th v. •Michigan State, 12:05 pm, TBD
October 12th - Bye Week #1
October 19th @ Ohio State, 3:35 pm, ABC/ESPN/ESPN2
October 26th v. •Northwestern, TBD
November 2nd v. Wisconsin, TBD
November 9th @ Purdue, TBD
November 16th - Bye Week #2
November 23rd v. •Michigan, TBD
November 29th @ •Nebraska, 12:05 pm, ABC

•Big Ten Legends Division Game

*Times Eastern


Scouting Next Opponent: Michigan State Bye Week
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September 28th, 2013.  Iowa @ Minnesota Golden Rodents, 4-0, 0-0 B1G
Previous Meetings: 106, Rodents lead 61-43-2
Last Meeting: 2012, Rodents 13, Hawks 31

Current Line: Iowa -1

Turnover Margin: +2,  B1G #7, FBS #48

Current Week 2 Deep:

Hawkeye Stat Pack 
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Offense
Total   443.3  Pass  199.3  Rush 244.0  Scoring 35.3
B1G    #7               #8             #6                  #9
FBS    #54             #89           #24                #48
Defense  
Total   290.8  Pass  199.3  Rush 91.5   Scoring 17.0
B1G    #5             #4                 #5                  #5
FBS    #19           #46               #12                #26  
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Week 4: Western Michigan

Week 4 BTN Game Tracker, Zip 10035, Provider Time Warner Cable: Channel 473 (BTN overflow 1).  Ohio State game on the main BTN channel, 472.

Return home to find the Ohio State game was on both channels - so no Hawk game on the DVR.  Good thing we were at the bar and were watching via Directv.

Which means no play by play this week, but then again, it’s not like the game was in question, so we don’t need to dive as deep into this one.  

Someday, when you have grandkids, you can tell them how you saw the Iowa Hawkeyes defeat a team 28-3 without the Iowa offense ever taking the field - and let them go crazy trying to figure out how that happened.  

Iowa only had a 10-0 lead at the end of the 1st quarter.  Our first possession started from the WMU 22, thanks to a 44 yard punt return by KMM.  We would get as far as the 1, but then stall, and Meyer booted the 20 yard field goal home, for the 3-0 lead.

WMU went 3 and out, followed by the Iowa offense, but in the exchange the Hawkeye punt coverage team downed the ball at the Bronco 1 yard line.  They went 3 and out again, and Iowa had the ball back at the WMU 45 to begin their next drive.

This one would end with the 21 yard td strike from Jake to Hillyer, and the Hawkeyes had the 10-0 lead with 1:54 left in the 1st.  

Broncos, quickly 3 and out again, and KMM actually loses 6 yards on the return.  The Hawks get the ball back with 50 seconds left in the quarter.

This Hawkeye drive would wrap around the quarter break, and finally die at the Iowa 30, where Kornbrath had a 36 yard punt, Broncos ball at their 34.

They would go 3 and out yet again.  Their punt team dropped the ball at the Iowa 17 - where KMM caught it, took off, and after cutting the ball to the near sideline had an armada of Iowa blockers guiding him to the end zone for an IOWA TOUCHDOWN and 17-0 lead.  

The Broncos started the next drive from their 17, and it soon went 3 and out, and once again the rugby style punt beat the gunners down the field, and KMM got through the first wave, found open space on the far side of the field, and he took this one back 63 yards for another HAWKEYE TOUCHDOWN, and 24-0 lead. Two tds within a minute of game time.   Here is a youtube video of the returns for your viewing pleasure.


Kevonte would become just the 3rd Big Ten player with two punt return tds in the same game.  And by the time the day would end, KMM would stand 17 yards short of the Iowa single game record for punt return yards of 201.  Held by - Nile Kinnick.

And as far as our crack research staff can tell - that’s the first time in Division 1 history a player has taken back to back punts to pay-dirt.  

The subsequent Iowa kick coverage got a bit loose, and the Broncos brought it out to their 37.  The drive would get as far as the Iowa 19 - but pressure in the QBs face forced his throw to be short, and Miller would pick it off in the end zone to kill the drive. 

But Iowa would give the ball right back when Daniels fumbled, and this was the one time the Broncos were able to score, a 23 yard field goal, and WMU was within 24-3.

Iowa - responded.  A drive that saw Jake scramble for 31 yards (twice, do to a penalty) would end with Mark taking it in from 4 out and the 31-3 lead.  

The Iowa defense was not even willing to give the Broncos another 3 and out, and so Lowery picked off their 3rd down pass at the 35, and he took it back for a td and just like that, Iowa had a 38-3 lead, and that his how the 1st half would end.  Iowa fans, feeling much better at halftime than they have in a long, long time.

After the break, the Hawkeye kick return team took the ball all the way to the Bronco 45, Plewa with the honors, so they were in business to start the 3rd.

This drive would get as far as the WMU 16, where Jordan got a little too excited with his 8 yard gain and he lost the ball, and the Broncos had the ball back at their 8.

But not for long - the Broncos had the backup quarterback in there, Terrell, and he tried to float a pass to the far sideline to start the drive - but Lowery stepped inside of the wideout to pick it off, and then there was a race to the pylon, and he dove in for the 2nd pick 6 of his day, and Iowa had pushed the lead to 45-3.

Western, 3 and out, and the Hawks had the ball back at their 36.

Soon down at the Bronco 20, Iowa would commit t false start on 1st down.  1st and 15.

And then, they had a delay of game.  1st and 20.  Pass, no good.  Daniels back in on 2nd down, his run nets a yard.  And so the Hawkeyes faced a 3rd and 19 from the WMU 29.

And of course, Jake would drop back, step up, and then fire a frozen rope to the near side pylon where Powell caught it in stride and the Hawks had a 52-3 lead.  That would be the junior speedster’s first Hawkeye touchdown.  First of many I think.

And that would be it for Jake and many other starters.  When Iowa got the ball back, we finally saw the Iowa back up QB take the field - and it was C.J Beathard.  His first drive went 3 and out, but Iowa soon had the ball back at their 17 to start the 4th quarter.

On a 2nd and 9, C.J. found Powell for 54 yards, to the WMU 28, and that’s a pretty good pass to have be your first college completion.  A short time later, the Hawks had a 2nd and 8 from the Bronco 16, and Canzeri took the ball and he exploded through the line to score the touchdown and give the Hawks the 59-3 margin.  

WMU, 3 and out one more time, for the memories.  

Iowa got the ball back with 9:36 left, and this drive was another one of those rush only drives, and the Hawks would get it as far as the Bronco 3, where with about 1:20 left, we assumed the victory formation, and killed the clock to bring the game to an end.  I had to wonder how many teams, playing almost entirely backups, would have done the same - kneel on the ball rather than score the touchdown.

And then the Beer Song played, and there was much rejoicing in Kinnick and at Iowa game watches around the nation.  

While as soon as it ended, the Hawkeyes could turn their attention to the upcoming road trip.  

It was, in many ways, a perfect game for the Hawkeyes.  Almost perfect balance for the tailbacks, Jordan 13 for 73, Daniels 13 for 54, Mark 10 for 43, Damon 10 for 37.  Even the two QBs tossed in 60 net rushing yards.  It added up to 258 for the Hawkeyes, so the Iowa rushing attack keeps on rolling right along.  

And we were able to give Mark an easy day, and get a few more carries for the backups, a perfect situation.  

Jake, a rather light day, 10-15 for 134, the two touchdowns, and no interceptions.  C.J. 1 for 3 for the 54 yard bomb.  

Of course, you could also say the Iowa defense and special teams DENIED the Iowa offense 4 possessions!  But they scored on all 4 of those plays, so that’s ok.

The defense, gave up only 74 net rushing yards, and 135 net passing.  And they forced 4 turnovers.  

A complete performance from all three units that we might not see again for quite some time.  

And news today (Monday), that for his efforts, KMM is your Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week.  And for his two pick-6 day, Lowery is your Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week as well.  Congrats guys!

More news today (Wednesday), that Lowery was also named the Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week.  A youngin who says who is Jim Thorpe?  Learn, ye young ones:


This was a game where we got some meaningful snaps for many 2nd and 3rd team players.  Just what we needed as we begin this next part of our season.

So the Hawks finish the non-con at 3-1, which I think was about as good as many of us could have hoped.  Sure, the three teams we have topped currently have a winning percentage of Zero.  We won them, and it’s not about style points, it’s about getting first to bowl eligible, and from there, moving onto the next goal.

And our team can feel good about the progress we have made.  A legit rushing attack, an improving quarterback, and an Iowa defense that is a beast to run against.  We can be better on all facets of the game, and the coaches will continue to work on the things we need to do better.  But unlike some other teams we are going to face in the B1G slate, the Hawkeyes can say they are opening the conference season heading forward.  

Week 5: Minnesota

Here we come, Rodents.

Some have questioned why I continue to refer to the Gophers as Rodents.  Science class!

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Sciuridae
Genus: Spermophilus

And what do birds of prey (like Hawks) like to feed on?  

You guessed it - rodents.

Then again...they may choose to hunt something a bit bigger:


But that’s enough science for today, now we return to football.

The Rodents are off to a 4-0 start.  Let’s look and see what we can learn from this.

Week 1, the Rodents hosted UNLV, and won it 51-23.  Note, this was not the UNLV basketball team of the late 80s.  Anyway, the Rodents rushed for 226 yards in this game, but only passed for 99.  This was a game rather like that Hawkeye game of last week.  The Rodents had two special team tds, and also a pick-6, to make the margin of victory larger than the play on the field.

UNLV is 2-2 on the young season - which is encouraging, as they only won 2 games in 2012.

In week 2, the Rodents traveled to Las Cruces, NM, to take on the New Mexico State Aggies, where they were victorious 44 to 21.  In this game the Rodents returned a punt for a td and also a fumble for a td, to again pad the margin a bit.  They pounded out 342 rushing yards with 127 through the air, but were only 2 for 9 on 3rd down conversions.  

The Aggies are 0-4 after falling to #13 UCLA 59-13 last week.

Week 3, the Rodents returned home to face Western Illinois.  This was a 29-12 victory, but it was what happened at halftime that made this game noteworthy.  Rodent coach Jerry Kill had his 4th seizure since going to Minnesota, (this his 3rd season) and he had to watch the 2nd half from the hospital.  There the Rodents overcame a 12-7 late 3rd quarter deficit to pull away in the 4th with 2 touchdowns.  In this game, the Rodents rushed for 213 yards and passed for 124.

The Leathernecks are 2-2, having just fallen 38-7 to UNLV.

Last week, the Rodents hosted San Jose State, and once again had a rather comfortable finish, winning it 43-24.  In this one, they rushed for 353 yards - including 151 by the backup QB - while just completing 5 passes for 71 yards.  But - the SJS QB completed 22 passes against the Rodent defense - for 439 yards.  

SJS is 1-2 on the year, having had a bye week in week 3.

Clearly, the Rodents are a rush-first team, from both tailbacks and QBs, and the passing is used when teams bail out to stop the run.  Though it’s not used real well - where the Rodents are 13th in the FBS with their 282 yard rushing average, they are just 118th with their 105 yard passing average.  

Nelson is the starting QB, who is currently nursing a bad hamstring.  He has rushed for 221 yards to date.  Leidner is the backup, and he has picked up 251 yards so far.

Cobb is the top tailback, who has 332 yards this season, and the second tailback Williams has 277.  

After his light week, Mark is at 468 yards, by comparison.

So it’s clear the Hawkeye defense needs to make the Rodents put the ball in the air.  This is the first of a few games (namely the Badgers and Spartans) where there are not really any surprises, so the Iowa defense needs to line up and punch then in the mouth.

When the Hawks have the ball, they will also look to establish the run.  To date, the Rodents give up 102 yards per game, which is not bad, but they have not seen an offense or diverse pack of tailbacks like Iowa has.  Look for our 4 pack to be well over 200 again.

And the Rodents have not been very good when it comes to pass defense, to the tune of 270 yards per game - 9th in the B1G, and 96th overall.  We can expect they will put extra men in the box to slow up the Iowa running game, and Jake must make them pay.  He is finding his tight ends along with the wideouts, and after last week we may see more of the Speedster flying down the field, and hauling in huge gains and dramatic tds.  This week, getting a couple more chances at possessions, Jake will be over 300 yards passing.  

Other interesting stats, the Rodents are good at kickoff return coverage, to the tune of 17.1 yards per return, good for 12th best in the land.  Though I don’t think they have seen speed like Cotton has yet.

However, they are not so good at punt return defense, averaging 8.33 yards per return.  That’s 11th in the conference and 76th overall.  Hello KMM!

Obviously, special teams scoring and turnovers must be in the Hawkeye’s favor to win on the road in the Big Ten.  Though we are 0-2 in the Rodents new outdoor stadium, there has been a large contingent of Hawkeye fans both times, and it is looking like it will be that way again this year. The Hawkeyes need to start fast and shut up the Rodent fans, while feeding off the energy of Kinnick North - Outdoors.

I expect the Hawkeye running game will grind the Rodents and that will lead Jake to many play-action opportunities to look down the field, which Greg Davis has been doing more over the past couple weeks.  We may even toss in some new wrinkles that the B1G coaches have not seen.  It adds up to the Hawks pulling away in the 2nd half, and getting within 1 game of .500 in the Rodents outdoor ballpark.  Hawks 38 - Rodents 17.  Go home, Floyd.  

GO HAWKS!!!
SEDGE

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