Iowa cruised to a 31-15 victory over Maryland on Saturday en route to an 8-0 record. The undefeated Hawkeyes weren't overly impressive but they controlled the entire game and gave the Terrapin offfense fits.
One of those outstanding Iowa defenders is defensive end Nate Meier. He's had a terrific season and has really picked up the slack with Drew Ott sidelined with two different injuries, the latest being season-ending.
Meier has given the Hawkeyes a much needed pass rush and has set the edge to shut down the perimeter runs to his side very effectively all year. That's his job and he's doing it at a very high level.
It showed up against Maryland once again yesterday as Meier totaled seven tackles, a sack, two tackles for loss, and two hits on the quarterback. He's been one of the more valuable players for Iowa's defensive unit.
"We're a pretty tight unit," Meier said. "Everyone believes in each other and executes well."
The Terps came into the game already with 24 giveaways as a team and the Hawkeyes took advantage of that, forcing four more turnovers in the game. Interceptions from Jordan Lomax, Miles Taylor, and a pick-six from Desmond King lead the way as well as a fumble recovery from Miles Taylor.
"We just have to play our game," Meier noted. "We knew coming in that they gave up a high percentage of turnovers. We just had to capitalize on that."
Meier did come off the field holding his arm later on in the second half with an apparent injury. He did not return in the game but his presence was likely not needed, anyways. He updated his status afterwards with his left arm in a sling.
"I'll be alright," Meier responded to a question regarding his condition. I just hurt myself. Yeah (it was upper body)."
In most cases, if the injury is serious and something that could keep the player out, that player will likely not be made available to the media afterwards. The fact that he entered the media room afterwards available for questions is a good sign. It will be something to monitor going forward this week but all signs point that it is not a huge concern.