FACTS & STATS: Site: Kinnick Stadium (70,585) — Iowa City, Iowa.
Television: Big Ten Network. Home Record: Indiana 2-1, Iowa 2-1. Away Record:
Indiana 1-1, Iowa 2-0. Neutral Record: Indiana 0-0, Iowa 0-0. Conference
Record: Indiana 0-1, Iowa 1-0. Series Record: Iowa leads, 42-28-4.
GAME NOTES: The Iowa Hawkeyes play host to the Indiana Hoosiers on Saturday
afternoon in a Big Ten Conference clash at Kinnick Stadium.
Indiana (3-2, 0-1) is trying to win two in a row for the first time this
season. The Hoosiers rebounded from a home loss to Maryland in their Big Ten
opener (37-15) with a 49-24 triumph over North Texas last weekend.
It’s Homecoming weekend for Iowa, and the team has won four of its last five
Homecoming contests. The Hawkeyes (4-1, 1-0) have notched two fourth-quarter
comebacks this season (Ball State and Pitt), and are coming off a bye last
Iowa holds a 42-28-4 lead over Indiana in the all-time series, although the
Hoosiers were a 24-21 winner when these teams last met in Bloomington in 2012.
Talented running back Tevin Coleman is the focal point of an Indiana offense
that ranks eighth nationally in rushing (300 ypg) and 18th in total yards from
scrimmage (513.2 ypg). Coleman notched his seventh straight 100-yard rushing
game — the longest streak in the nation — against North Texas with 150 yards
and a touchdown on 17 carries. It also marked the 14th straight game that
Coleman found the end zone, another FBS best. He is first in the country in
yards from scrimmage (196.0), second in rushing yards (168.2), fourth in yards
per carry (8.01) and tied for seventh in rushing touchdowns (eight).
Quarterback Nate Sudfeld made North Texas pay for loading up the box to try
and stop Coleman, as he completed 23-of-29 passes for 230 yards with three
scores. Sudfeld’s .793 completion percentage stands as the second-best single-
game total in IU history, and his two interceptions in 2014 are tied for the
third-fewest in the nation right now.
Indiana’s defense has been inconsistent through five games, as the unit ranks
78th nationally in total defense (415.2) and 84th in points allowed (28.6).
However, the Hoosiers are also 26th with 7.0 tackles for loss per game and
31st nationally in third-down conversion defense (.325). They held North Texas
to 6-of-15 on third down last week, and won the time-of-possession battle by
more than six minutes. A pair of freshmen, linebacker Tegray Scales and safety
Chase Dutra, each recorded their first career interceptions in the victory.
Iowa has not eclipsed 24 points in a game since the season opener against FCS
foe Northern Iowa. However, the team has made enough plays on a weekly basis
to sit at 4-1 coming off last week’s bye. Against Purdue a week earlier,
sophomore quarterback C.J. Beathard made his first career start in place of an
ineffective Jake Rudock. Beathard threw an interception that was returned for
a first-quarter touchdown, but then rallied the Hawkeyes back from a 10-0
deficit with 24 unanswered points. Running back Mark Weisman finished with 76
yards and two TDs on 24 carries.
Whereas Iowa’s offense has had its ups and downs, the defense continues to get
the job done from week to week. Iowa ranks seventh in the country in run
defense (93.2 ypg), 15th in total defense (310.4 ypg) and 16th in scoring
defense (17.2 ppg). The Hawkeyes were quite disruptive against Purdue,
limiting the Boilermakers to only 56 second-half yards and 156 total on the
day. Nate Meier had 1.5 of the team’s four sacks, while John Lowdermilk came
up with two interceptions to go along with his team-high seven tackles. Iowa
forced six three-and-outs and yielded just nine first downs for the game.
For one reason or another, the Hoosiers have struggled to bring their A-game
from one week to the next. They’ll certainly need it here against a well-
rested Iowa team playing on its home turf.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Iowa 27, Indiana 20