MADISON – Making its first trip to Camp Randall Stadium since 2009, Iowa is taking a big brass bull home with them as a souvenir.
An ugly thriller in both team’s Big Ten opener when the Hawkeyes’ way, as turnovers were the deciding factor in the Hawkeyes’ 10-6 victory in front of 80,933 fans at Camp Randall Stadium.
In a game typical of the recent series between the two schools (three of the last four decided by a single possession), it came down to execution. Wisconsin’s offense had none of it, held to its lowest home point total since Sept. 2003.
After playing clean football for the final two games of the nonconference season, Joel Stave committed four turnovers and struggled with his accuracy. Two of the turnovers happened inside Wisconsin’s own 30-yard line, leading to all of the Hawkeyes points.
None of those turnovers compared to the botched handoff with just under eight minutes to go in the game, as Stave stumbled coming out from under center at the Iowa 1, tried to unsuccessfully to hand off to Taiwan Deal and couldn’t pry the ball away from the Hawkeyes' defense.
The Badgers also got little out of the running game. A week after rushing for 326 yards against the Rainbow Warriors, the Hawkeyes stuffed the Badgers to the tune of only 86 rushing yards and no gains over 11.
And yet, Wisconsin had enough gas in the tank to have a chance to win thanks to its defense and some gifts from the Hawkeyes, who twice got zero points after being inside UW’s 10-yard line.
Facing a fourth-and-2 on Iowa’s 16, Stave’s pass into the flat fell incomplete to put the final nail in the coffin.
The loss overshadowed a tremendous day from senior outside linebacker Joe Schobert, who finished with eight tackles, four for loss, two forced fumbles, one recovery, three sacks and five quarterback hurries. For the season, Schobert has 13.5 tackles for loss and nine sacks.
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12 plays, 56 yards, 5:02 TOP, 9:58 left
FG Rafael Gaglianone 46
Key Play: A week after establishing the run game on the opening drive, Joel Stave and Wisconsin came out throwing. The Badgers completed four passes over 10 yards, but the drive stalled at the Iowa 28 when cornerback Desmond King made an athletic pass breakup on an attempt to Rob Wheelwright.
5 plays, 31 yards, 2:15 TOP, 2:59 left
George Kittle 1-yard pass from C.J. Beathard (Marshall Koehn kick)
Key Play: Joel Stave gift wrapped great field position to Iowa when he threw directly to cornerback Desmond King, who returned the interception to the UW's 31.
4 plays, 1 yard, 1:53 TOP, 1:03 left
FG Marshall Koehn 33
Key Play: On the first play following the touchdown, Iowa defensive end Drew Ott runs right pass senior left tackle Tyler Marz to force a Joel Stave fumble, which Iowa recovered on UW's 15.
10 plays, 27 yard, 4:26 TOP, 3:40 left
FG Rafael Gaglianone 46
Key Play: UW hasn't been sharp on third down all season, but Joel Stave, who has struggled all day, connected with Rob Wheelwright on a 10-yard completion on third-and 4, giving UW a first down on the Iowa 24.
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