Know Your Opponent: Iowa Hawkeyes

 Kinnick Stadium is one of the best venues I have been to for college football

Kinnick Stadium is one of the best venues I have been to for college football

Written By Sammy Jacobs (@Hoosier_Huddle)

This Years Record: 4-1 (1-0) T-2nd in Big Ten West

Head Coach: Kirk Ferentz 16th Year at Iowa

Overall: 112-80 .583

At Iowa 112-80

Bowls: 6-5

Last Years Record: 8-5 (5-3) Lost to LSU in Outback Bowl 21-14

Bowls Since 2000: 11 Appearances (6-5 Record)

Mascot: Herky

Colors: Black and Gold

Outfitter: Nike

National Titles: 1

Conference Titles: 13

Heisman Winners: 1

Fun Fact: In 1985, Fry’s Hawkeyes were No. 1 in the country and riding a seven-game win streak heading into a nationally televised matchup at Ohio State. Before the game, Fry had a gold sticker placed on his players’ helmets with the letters “ANF” printed in black. Initials for “America Needs Farmers.

1. Iowa will Experiment With a Two-Quarterback System- Head coach Kirk Ferentz came out earlier in the week saying that the Hawkeyes would play both Jake Rudock and C.J. Beathard at quarterback against Indiana. The odd thing about this system is that both quarterbacks are very similar. It is not like one is a running threat while the other is a pocket passer. They both are pass first quarterbacks who can scramble and run if they have to. Rudock has played in four of the five Iowa games compiling 798 yards passing while completing 66.9 percent of his passes. Beathard, on the other hand, has appeared in three games accounting for 363 yards and completing only 54.2 percent of his passes. Both quarterbacks have had issues however. Rudock, the incumbent starter, lacks big play ability while Beathard struggles with accuracy. It is hard to tell who will take the snaps as the “starter”. Rudock started the first four games of the year before he was banged up in the win over Pittsburgh, while Beathard started the most recent game at Purdue.

2. Where has the Iowa Running Game Gone?- When you think of Iowa Hawkeye football you think of a big tough defense and a punishing running game. So it may surprise some that Iowa is only averaging 3.6 yards per carry. Mark Weisman, of the Weisman for Heisman campaign a few years ago, leads the team with 260 yards and eight touchdowns on the ground. The eight scores look great but he is gaining just 3.3 yards per carry and a measly 52 yards per game. Iowa has two other running backs that are also struggling. Jordan Canzeri, 38 rushes for 152 yards, and Damon Bullock, 20 carries for 52 yards. This is clearly not your typical Iowa team when the Hoosiers come in with the better ground attack.

3. Iowa City and Kinnick Stadium Are a Great Place To Watch Football- Iowa City is my favorite place to go in the Big Ten to watch a game. The people are fantastic, the tailgating is great, and the atmosphere is top notch. It is what Big Ten football Saturday’s should be. Add in my favorite thing of them all, the Hawkeye Express, a train that takes fans from a commuter lot to the stadium. The experience is topped off by Kinnick Stadium, which holds over 70,000 but seems so much more intimate than that. Saturday is “Spirit Day” in Iowa and the fans have been told that there will be a stripe out. Take it all Hoosier fans, this is what Big Ten football is all about.

4. Iowa is Once Again the Comeback Kid- In all four of Iowa’s wins in 2014 they have trailed, in three of those games they erased 10-point deficits. Iowa has seen this type of performance before in 2009 when they came back from large deficits on their way to an Orange Bowl title. It is a testament to the trust that the team has in Ferentz and their overall fortitude as a team. Nobody should count this team out if they fall behind early.