On to Indy they go. It wasn’t easy or simple, but the Hawkeyes pulled out a 28-21 win in Lincoln on Black Friday, ultimately punching their ticket to the Big Ten Championship game.
Things didn’t look go early on. The offense had trouble getting anything going in the first half, falling behind and ultimately going into halftime down 14-6. Sophomore quarterback Alex Padilla finished the first half 6-of-14 for 76 yards. He was replaced by Spencer Petras at halftime.
Nebraska widened their lead to 21-6 in third, but after that it was all Hawkeyes. The offense only produced one touchdown, Spencer Petras’ game-winning QB sneak. The other two phases were the ones that lit up the scoreboard. The Hawkeyes got the spark they needed on special teams, just as it did against Illinois, when Henry Marchese blocked a punt, which Kyler Fischer promptly returned 14 yards for a touchdown. Caleb Shudak converted all four of his field goals and the defense got a safety and a game-sealing pick.
The Hawkeyes did what they needed to do, and got a big assist from their Floyd foes, who beat Wisconsin 23-13 the very next day to send Iowa to it’s second Big Ten Championship game. Just like the first time, a Michigan school stands between them and a championship. This time it’s the Wolverines.
You can watch highlights from the game up above. There’s also photos down below, along with stories from last week’s coverage on the left. For fond memories, see the photos and highlights from wins this season against Iowa State, Kent State, Colorado State, Maryland, Penn State, Northwestern, Minnesota and Illinois. For sadness, look back on the losses to Purdue and Wisconsin.
You can also go back and look at how the expert’s did picking this game.
New week, new bowl predictions, same state. Three bowl predictions still have the Hawkeyes heading to the Sunshine state, but now to the home of the 2017 co-National Champions. The consensus is they’ll be in the Citrus Bowl on New Year’s Day. The disagreement comes from who the opponent will be. CBS Sports and Athlon Sports say it’ll be Texas A&M. College Football News and Action Network say it’ll be Kentucky.