The undefeated Hawkeyes take on Minnesota at home on Saturday under the lights in Kinnick Stadium. A year ago, Iowa marched into Minneapolis and was thumped by the Gophers 51-14. That loss has not disappeared from the mind of the Hawkeye contingent as they prepare for this week.
Losing in that manner tends to stick in the mind of a team, and that is exactly what has occured with this year's Hawkeye squad.
"Anytime as a competitor when you lose like that, it sticks with you for a while," Iowa center Austin Blythe said. "We definitely need to understand what happened last year and make sure it doesn't happen this year."
"They stuck it to us last year and beat us pretty well," starting quarterback C.J. Beathard pointed out. "We just need to stay focused and not let the outside noise (come into play). We know it's going to be electric in there. We just have to focus on us and continue to get better throughout the week. We know Minnesota is a good team. They got the best of us last year."
"We definitely have it in the back of their mind," offensive lineman Jordan Walsh mentioned. "The coaches bring it up. We need to remember it, but still move on and know what we need to do to prepare."
"We obviously watched tape from last year," running back LeShun Daniels noted. "We try not to focus on last year's game because we're different teams. We just try to focus on our preparation so we're prepared on Saturday."
At the same time, the Hawkeyes know that they're much better than they were a year ago. They're undefeated this year and playing much better football. Both teams come into this game much differently than they did a year ago.
"We're a different team and it's a different season," Beathard shared. "We feel good about us this season. I think if we go out there and execute, prepare, and stay focused during the game that we should be alright."
"We see a lot of changes," running back Akrum Wadley stated. "We're a different offense. We're much more mature and much more physical."
Minnesota still presents a challenge and have played well the past two weeks. The Hawkeyes are well aware of that.
"They're a good defense," Beathard discussed. "They played Michigan tough, and Ohio State tough. They have a lot of good guys back there at defensive back. They have good speed."
"They're a lot better," Walsh told the media. "They have experience at linebacker, defensive end, and defensive tackle."
Make no mistake, even though the Hawkeyes are focused on this year and this week, they still remember what happened last year and are seeking redemption.
"We want revenge," Wadley admitted. "It should be a good game. We expect them to play tough and hard. We have to focus on us, execute, and stick to the grind."