The Hawkeyes came to Evanston looking to move to one step closer to being bowl eligible and possibly staying in the Legends Division race. They left with a .500 record and wondering if they will make a bowl game at all. There were a few bright spots, including the return of Damon Bullock to the field, which certainly gave the Iowa offense a boost. Bullock gets one of our game balls in our weekly news and notes.
OFFENSE: Damon Bullock - Not many bright spots, but it was nice to see Damon Bullock back on the field and he looked like he had very little rust after five weeks on the sidelines. Bullock finished with 107 yards rushing and had another 41 yards receiving.
DEFENSE: Micah Hyde - Probably should have left this one blank after Iowa gave up nearly 350 yards on the ground to the Wildcats. However, Iowa avoided giving up even more than thanks to the effort of Micah Hyde. With Northwestern running back Venric Mark starting out in his own end zone, he hit the hole at the one yard line and was off to the races. Hyde eventually ran him down 72 yards later. Great effort and maybe the only true bright spot from an otherwise dismal performance by the Iowa defense.
SPECIAL TEAMS: John Wienke - Even though the post game stat sheet says Cody Sokol did some punting for the Hawkeyes, we know it was Wienke. The former quarterback dropped a great punt inside the one yard line today. He's had kicks like that a couple of times this year and deserves recognition for it.
NEWS AND NOTES
QB: Vandenberg, Rudock, Sokol, Beathard
RB: Weisman, Garmon, Bullock, Rogers, Gimm, Canzeri, Reisen
WR: Davis, Martin-Manley, Staggs, Smith, Cotton, Nielsen, Hillyer, Shumpert
TE: Fiedorowicz, Derby, Hamilton, Duzey, Kreiger-Coble
OL: Ferentz, Blythe, Tobin, Van Sloten, MacMillan, Walsh, Clark, Gaul, Ward, Boffeli
DL: Gaglione, Bigach, Trinca-Pasat, Alvis, Davis, McMinn, Cooper, Spears, Ott, Hardy, McMillan
LB: Morris, Kirksey, Hitchens, Perry, Alston, Fisher, Collins, Plewa
DB: Hyde, Castillo, Donatell, Miller, Lowery, Law, Lowdermilk, Sleeper, Draper, Buford, Swanson, Smith
ST: Meyer, Koehn, Mossbrucker, Wienke, Kornbrath, Kreiter
BACK IN THE LINEUP
Mark Weisman and B.J. Lowery returned to the starting lineup against the Wildcats. Weisman played, but did not start last week against Penn State. He did not play in the 2nd half against Northwestern. B.J. Lowery returned to the starting lineup after missing the past two games. Lowery collected the first interception of his Iowa career in the first quarter.
Redshirt freshman Jordan Walsh made the first start of his college career. Walsh started at left guard. The regular left guard, Matt Tobin, moved out to left tackle. Walsh split time at guard with Nolan MacMillan.
Drew Ott saw action for the first time this season. Ott played in the 2nd half at defensive end. Ott is the 7th prospect from the freshmen class to play this year.
Keenan Davis left the game after a hard hit to the back. Following the game he said he fell awkwardly on his wrist and his back was also sore, but he should be fine moving forward.
Mark Weisman started at running back for the Hawkeyes. But, for the second straight week he did not make it to the second half. Weisman has been trying to play through the pain of an ankle he sprained in the fourth quarter against Michigan State. His status for next week is still up in the air.
Brad Rogers did not play today due to an undisclosed injury.
James Morris and Joe Gaglione missed a few snaps due to injury and returned to action.
After missing five games, Damon Bullock returned to action on Saturday. Bullock confirmed after the game that he was set to return for the Michigan State game, but got hit in the head during practice that week and suffered a setback. He said it felt good to be back on the field and missed playing. He finished with 107 yards rushing and had 5 receptions for 41 yards.
Kickoff Return: Cotton, Smith, Lowdermilk, Hillyer, Derby, Krieger-Coble, Perry, Staggs, Gimm, Duzey, and Reisen.
Kickoff Coverage: Shumpert, Meyer, Hillyer, Swanson, Kirksey, Law, Lowdermilk, Fisher, Nielsen, Sleeper, and Buford.
MEYER ON THE MARK
Mike Meyer got back on track this week, connecting on his only field goal of the day, a 40 yarder in the first quarter. Meyer has now made 15-18 field goals this year and is perfect on PATs.
GOOD DAY FOR KMM
Kevonte Martin-Manley led the Hawkeyes in receiving with 7 receptions for 46 yards. Keenan Davis had 3 catches for 30 yards. C.J. Fiedorowicz had 3 for 23 yards and Jordan Cotton had 2 catches for 23 yards. Jacob Hillyer and Tevaun Smith both had one reception. That was the first career reception for both players.
Christian Kirksey led the Iowa defense with 9 tackles. Tanner Miller finished with 7 tackles. Anthony Hitchens and James Morris had 6 tackles each.
Iowa will travel to Indiana next Saturday. Kickoff time has not yet been set. It will either be at 11:00 a.m. (central) or 2:30 p.m. (central). The game is slated to air on the BTN.