November 9, 2017

The Eternal Season - Sedge's 2017 Iowa Football Game Notes, Week 11: Hawkeyes @ Badgers

Sedge's Hawkeye Football Game Notes - 2017 Edition
Iowa’s Record: 6-3, 3-3 Big Ten, 2-1 B1G West 
Iowa’s Rankings:
AP: #25 (147 points)
Coaches: 112 votes
College Football Playoff: #20
*Times Eastern

September 2nd, v. Wyoming, WIN 24-3
September 9th, @ Iowa State, WIN 44-41 OT
September 16th, v. North Texas, WIN 31-14
September 23rd, v. Penn State, Loss 21-19
September 30th,  @ Michigan State, Loss 17-10
October 7th, v. •Illinois, WIN 45-16
October 15th, Bye Week
October 21st, @ •Northwestern, Loss 17-10 OT
October 28th, v. •Minnesota, WIN 17-10
November 4th, v. Ohio State, WIN 55-24
November 11th, @ •Wisconsin, 3:30 pm, ABC
November 18th, v. •Purdue, TBD
November 24th, @ •Nebraska, 4:00 pm, FS1 Black Friday

•Big Ten West Division Game

December 2nd, Big Ten Championship Game
Lucas Oil Arena, Indianapolis  

Scouting next opponent
November 11th, Purdue @ Northwestern, 7:00 pm, ESPN2

*Wondering which BTN channel we are on? Click, enter, find.
November 11th, 2017: #20 Iowa Hawkeyes @ #8 Wisconsin Badgers, 9-0, 6-0 Big 10, 4-0 B1G West
Previous Meetings: 90, Badgers lead 45-43-2
Last Meeting: 2016, Badgers 17 Hawkeyes 9

Kinnick Color of the Week:

Current Line: Iowa +12.5

Turnover Margin: +2,  B1G #5 FBS #50

Interceptions: 13, B1G #2, FBS #7

Hawkeye Stat Pack - 2017 Through Week 10
Total   361.6  Pass 218.3  Rush 143.2  Scoring 28.3
B1G    #10           #8                #10                 #5
FBS    #102     #76              #91                 #68
Total   369.0  Pass 221.7 Rush 147.3     Scoring 18.1
B1G    #9             #10            #8                 #4
FBS    #44            #66           #46               #16
Wisconsin   9-0, 6-0 B1G, 4-0 B1G West
Northwestern   6-3, 4-2 B1G, 2-1 B1G West
Iowa                         6-3, 3-3 B1G, 2-1 B1G West
Nebraska             4-5, 3-3 B1G, 2-2 B1G West
Purdue             4-5, 4-4 B1G, 2-2 B1G West
Minnesota     4-5, 1-5 B1G, 1-2 B1G West
Illinois             2-7, 0-6 B1G, 0-5 B1G West
WEEK 10: Buckeyes

First, enjoy every play of this game without any commercials or the halftime break!

While we here at Sedge’s Game Notes thought the Hawks could indeed beat Ohio State, it was more along the lines of a last second field goal or td, not a woodshed pile driving beat down that is was.  And it was glorious!

That leaves the Hawks bowl eligible (again), confirms that indeed, Iowa teams can hit full stride come November, and has the Badgers on notice as the Hawks head east this weekend.

But more about the Badgers later.  

Let’s lead off with the Iowa offense this week.  Against what many consider a mini NFL front, the Iowa O line gave up one single sack, and that on a play where Nate kind of stepped forward, probably wanting to run the ball, but got tripped up.  A huge effort by the O line that propelled the entire Iowa offense.

Nate, 20 for 31, for 226 yards, with 5! td passes, and no turnovers.  He now has 22 td passes on the season, 5 short of Chuck Long’s school record 27.  This would be a  good week to tie the record Nate.  Oh,  and Nate also had a 47 yard pooch punt, but it should have been about 43, which would have pinned OSU inside their 3 yard line.  Nate is your Big 10 Offensive Player of the Week.  

Of note catching those passes - Hockenson 5 for 71, a long of 24, and 2 tds, and Fant, 4 for 54, a long of 25, and 2 tds.  All season we have been calling for Iowa to use the tight ends more to attack teams selling out to stop Iowa’s running game.  And Saturday, with Brian calling the plays, Nate found his tight ends.  Hockenson is a freshman and Fant a sophomore like Nate.  Two more seasons of tight ends wreaking havoc while Nate abolishes Iowa passing records.  Weeeeeeee!!!!!!

Wadley 3 catches for 40 yards, Meerkat 2 for 25 with a long of 18, which means one of those catches did not pick up a 1st down…

Oh, and that pass catching list includes Kluver - the long snapper - from Rastetter, on the trick field goal play where the punter flipped the ball to the long snapper, he make the catch, but in doing so, stumbled, and thus missed his chance to score a touchdown.

Little matter, the next play had one of OSUs linemen hanging on Nate’s lower leg, Nate calmly stood and fired the ball into the end zone for another one of his touchdown passes.  

All that 1st down passing and td passes allowed Iowa to churn out 243 yards of rushing on the Buckeye defense.  Wadley, 20 for 118, a long of 30, on his 1st carry of the day, which set the tone.  

Butler, 10 for 74, with the long of 53, when he was just caught inside the 5 yard line.

 Young, 5 for 47, a long of 34, and the one rushing td the Hawkeyes had Saturday.  

And yes, Rastetter, that fake punt he tried to execute from deep in Iowa territory.  It did not work, and Kirk was sure to let the punter know as he came to the sideline.  But the replay clearly shows, the guy who tackled him about 3 yards short of the yellow line had run from the far side of the field - and at least 3 Hawks could have just bumped him, and that would have give Rastetter the 1st down.  But they did not, and that possession was the one that allowed Ohio State to move from 17 to 24 points.

But of course, Iowa and Ohio State had been tied at 17 - and then Iowa took off, and before Ohio State could get to 24, Iowa had 48, and would finish with 55.

The Iowa defense.  We said they needed to be at least +2 or +3 in the turnover battle,  and score on every turnover.  Well we were plus 4 on 4 interceptions - the opening play pick-six by Hooker, and then 3 interceptions by the ever present Josh Jackson, who is your National defensive player of the week for his efforts.

The Hawks scored 17 points off of those 4 turnovers, so they scored on 3 of 4.  Well done boys.

Yes, OSU moved the ball well to start the game, but then the Hawkeyes made some adjustments, and they handcuffed the Ohio State offense while the Iowa offense ran away with the game. 

Once more note from the OSU beatdown, that was Hawkeye win #400 in games played in Iowa City, all time.   

So, we know that this got the attention of the Badgers.  You see, the conventional wisdom is that they still really have not played anybody, no teams ranked in the top 25.  Well look at that.  Here comes Iowa, ranked #25.  And the Hawks are ranked #20 in the FBS Playoff Poll.

And while some may worry that Iowa will have a hard time coming down from the high of demolishing Ohio State, I don’t think so.  This is another trophy game, we have played 2 so far, and we have 2 trophies.  Now we need a 3rd.

WEEK 11: Badgers

Now that Iowa has kicked Ohio State out of the playoff chase, B1G fans are pointing to the Badgers as the last-best hope for a slot in the four team field.  But to get there, the Badgers would likely have to go 13-0, and win the Big Ten title game in dominating fashion.  But to get to 13-0, they would have to first get by the Hawks.  Challenge accepted.

How did the Badgers get to 9-0, while seeming to gain so little respect?  Kind of reminds you of the 2015 Iowa team.

They opened the 2017 campaign hosting Utah State.  This, a comfortable win for the Badgers, 59-10.

A week later, they hosted Florida Atlantic, and this was not as easy, despite the 31-14 win.

In week 3, the Badgers traveled to Provo, Utah, to take on BYU.  Of note in this game, the Badger QB set a school record by completing 94% of his passes, as the Badgers took out BYU 40-6.  BYU is 2-8 on the year, not the BYU of old.

You may recall, the Badgers opens the B1G slate hosting the MIldcats, and beat them 33-24, in a game that was close throughout.  

A week later, they travelled to Lincoln.  This game was 17 all early in the 3rd, but the Cornhuskers could not stop the Badger ground game, and they pulled away to a 38-17 win.  

Back home in Camp Randall, they hosted Our Rival, Purdue.

This really an ugly game, the Badgers gifted Our Rival with 3 turnovers, but Our Rival could not do much against the Badger D, and they survived with a 17-9 victory.

Back at home again, Maryland came for a visit, and the Badgers had little trouble, 38-13.

From there visit Illinois, and of course, a Badger win, 24-10.

Then last week, the Badgers traveled to Indiana, and the Hoosiers jumped out to a 10-0 lead early in the 2nd quarter.  But the Badger offense woke up and lead 14-10 at halftime.

It was 24-17 Badgers after 3 quarters, and then they pulled away in the 4th to win it 45-17.  But in this game, the Badgers lost their top wideout, and one of their starting linebackers to injury, and one of the starting safeties was also hurt and is to be determined this week.  A costly victory over the Hoosiers.

So that is how they got to 9-0 in 9th in the first FBS playoff poll released last week, the 2nd coming tonight (Tuesday as I write this).  

Hornibrook, the Badger QB, is a sophomore.  He is 121 for 188, for 1,728 yards, with 15 tds, and (alert) 9 interceptions.  He has been sacked 12 times, and he is way in the hole for rushing yards on the season.  At 6’4 215, he is in there to throw the ball.  Just not always to Badger players.

The top running back is Taylor, #23, a freshman, who is 5’11, 214 pounds.  He has 190 carries for 1,368 yards, and 12 tds.  He has just 2 catches for 41 yards on the season.  He of course is not the only back that the Badgers will use, but he will be target number 1 for the Iowa defense to take away.  We want to force Hornibrook to put the ball up - where we can snag a few of them.

That top receiver, Cephus, #87, is a sophomore, but he is the one injured and will not play.

But of course they have a senior tight end, Fumagalli, #81, who 30 catches for 401 yards, and 3 tds.  He is a legit threat, a sure NFL tight end, but Iowa also has a few of those, and I think our defense, which is used to practicing against these tight ends, will have some solutions for this weapon of the Badgers.  I also think our young tight ends realize how good he is, and will look to out-stat him for the game.  

What do the stats tell us?

The Badgers are #1 in the nation at converting 3rd downs - 53.5% of the time, they do.  So the Hawks will need to see if they can make this stat suffer some.  

They have allowed both one blocked punt and one blocked field goal.  Again, in these rivalry games - special teams can turn a game in one play.

They are last Big Ten, and 112th overall, in Net Punting - just 35 yards a punt.  Meercat, how bout a nice long punt return td this week?

Those are really the only stats that stand out.  It’s a rivalry game, often the records and stats can be tossed out the window when the teams take the field.

Here is another weird stat - the road team has won this game the last 6 times.  Saturday’s game is in Camp Randall.

Yes, the Badgers are running a 3/4 defense - but there is plenty of film of that defense, Brian saw many 3/4 defenses in his time in the NFL, as did KOK, so I think they will have some plays in the book to attack that front the Badgers will present.  Yes, we are starting a freshman and redshirt freshman on the offense live, but they took a very huge step forward last week.  And, it’s November, when the whole Iowa team seems to gel.  Here we come Badgers.

Against Ohio State, Iowa threw the ball on 50% of their 1st down plays.  This is Brian using the players he has to attack defenses selling out to stop our run.  Of course, it worked last week.  Just as it can this week.

While the Iowa defense can do much the same when they are on the field - we can leave Josh and Manny on man to man islands out there, in Josh’s case, be wary Badger QB of that side of the field.  Manny has seemed to improve himself as the season has gone on. And because Hornibrook is not really mobile, the Iowa defense will have opportunities to get A.J. and the Nelsons back there wreaking havoc.   

The Hawkeye found a new gear to the offense last week, and it runs on passes to tight ends.  Now that Nate has found them, no reason to think it will stop.  4 more passing tds this week leaves him 1 short of the Iowa record.

While the Iowa defense feeds off their 3 quarter suffocating of Ohio State, and holds Wisconsin to 40% of their rushing season average.  Which will allow them to snag 3 more passes, to take over the Big Ten lead (from the Badgers) for passes intercepted on the season. 

With the new threat of the Iowa passing game, Wadley is going to be juiced up to out rush a true freshman running back for the Badgers.  He goes for 175 himself as Iowa puts up 290 of total rush agains the Badgers D.  

Hawkeyes 34, Badgers 21.



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