Iowa moves to 9-0 on the season with a 35-27 victory over Indiana in Bloomington. After falling behind 17-14, they outscored the Hoosiers 21-10 for the win. It pushes the Hawkeyes one step closer to a Big Ten West championship, a conference championship, and perhaps a special season to remember.
Here's the instant reaction from Saturday's Big Ten road triumph.
NEWS AND NOTES
- I thought the defense played well considering the challenge. They held Nate Sudfeld to 16-37 passing the ball for 180 yards and only one touchdown with one interception. That's a job well done. Of course Desmond King got the interception, his eighth of the season. He ties the school record held by Nile Kinnick.
- Josey Jewell played his tail off today. He was in on everything, swarming the ball from every linebacker position and every angle. He plays inside but even slid to the WILL linebacker for a bit while Cole Fisher nursed a migraine issue. Travis Perry played the inside linebacker position.
- It sounds like Jordan Canzeri will play next week. It also sounds like the injuries to Miles Taylor and Akrum Wadley are not deemed serious, either. I don't think either will miss time.
- C.J. Beathard played his heart out, certainly. He and George Kittle both went airborne for touchdowns on the day. It was another all-around team performance for the win. Beathard threw the ball much better today and a lot of it had to do with the superior pass protection. They were much better at pass blocking on the day.
- Akrum Wadley got dinged up slightly in the third quarter and sat out the rest of the game. He should still be good to go against Minnesota but he definitely set the tone early in the game by reeling off a 65 yard touchdown run. In his time at running back he has been the king of explosive plays. As long as he's able to forge that kind of production, it will be tough to keep him off the field.
- Cole Fisher's issue was a migraine. He had trouble with his peripheral vision and sensitivity to light. He only missed one series, though. It was not a concussion. Tevaun Smith also did not have a concussion despite taking a pretty significant hit to the head. He said it was the biggest hit he's ever taken but what bothered him mostly was the helmet he took to his back.
- Akrum Wadley had the explosive play but LeShun Daniels was the closer in the backfield. Wadley tallied 12 carries for 120 yards and a score but Daniels iced the game when it mattered in the fourth quarter. LeShun rushed the ball 23 times for 78 yards and 2 touchdowns. They haven't run the ball as well in recent weeks but it was a good sign to see the passing game improve. This is a team that can beat you in a lot of different ways and in all three phases of the game.
- It was also a balanced attack at wide receiver. Matt VandeBerg had five catches, while Tevaun Smith and Jacob Hillyer each had four receptions on the day.
- All George Kittle does is catch touchdowns. He's been a big threat in the red zone and continued that today with another score. The more prolific and productive tight end was Henry Krieger Coble. Krieger Coble had 2 catches for 21 yards but both came in significant moments and extended drives in crunch time.
- Speaking of crunch time, I have to go back to the play of C.J. Beathard. Maybe it's a good sign that we see him taking risks on the ground? He was far more mobile than anyone anticipated and that added element just makes Iowa that much more dangerous.