The junior safety made critical plays as the Hawkeyes held Michigan to just ten points Saturday in Ann Arbor.
“That game was just total defensive effort on both sides of the ball,” said Stone. “They were aggressive. We were aggressive. We made it hard on each other.”
The lowest scoring Big Ten game in the past decade had plenty of standout defensive performances. One of the Hawkeyes best came from Geno Stone.
“He’s one of the most underrated players in the Big Ten, in my opinion,” said junior defensive end A.J. Epenesa.
Stone didn’t fill the stats sheet against Michigan, but the plays he made all had huge implications. Epenesa says it’s because Stone is a relentless competitor.
“His love for the game sets him apart and his passion. He plays like it. That’s starting to show out. Yes, he is the momentum builder for us, those big hits, guys getting hyped up.”
Stone’s playmaking ability was on display for the Hawkeyes when he single-handedly ended two Michigan drives, one with a key interception and one with a great open-field tackle.
“They hit a couple big passes,” said Stone. “They were getting the ball moving, so to be able to get that turnover really helped a lot. We were trying to give the offense energy off that.”
“He definitely makes us better,” added head coach Kirk Ferentz. “He does have a knack of doing good things out there and we’re thrilled he’s on our football team. He’s playing really well for us right now.”
“I just feel like we need to do more as a defense,” said the junior safety. “We want to keep improving each play, each series. I feel like that play wasn’t really good enough. It was only the second or third drive of the game, so I feel like we could’ve did more.”