Catching Iowa Football with Kirk Ferentz on Sunday, we thought we would share the postgame notes on Iowa:
Iowa outscored Northern Illinois 9-0 in the fourth quarter to beat the Huskies, 18-17, today in Chicago. The Hawkeyes improved to 8-0 all-time against the Huskies, and won their 12th straight season opener. The win also snapped Northern Illinois' nine-game winning streak, which had been the longest in the nation.
The one-point victory was Iowa's first one-point win since defeating Northern Iowa, 17-16, in the 2009 season opener (Sept. 5).
The Hawkeyes rushed for 139 yards. Since 2010, the Hawkeyes are 15-2 when rushing for more than 120 yards.
PK Meyer made 4-5 field goals, converting 22, 30, 34 and 50-yarders, while missing one from 40. The five attempts matches a school record (Meyer at Indiana in 2010 and Kyle Schlicher at Minnesota in 2004). The four field goals made equals a career high; Meyer made four at Indiana (2010) and Iowa State (2011). The 50-yarder equals a career long. Meyer now has 171 points, moving past Ladell Betts, David Hudson and Marvin McNutt for 11th on Iowa's all-time scoring chart. He has made 32-42 career field goal attempts.
Iowa started on offense today. The Hawkeyes have started contests on offense in 136-of-163 games under Kirk Ferentz. Iowa is 15-12 in the games it has started on defense under Ferentz.
True freshmen who saw action in today's season opener include: RB Greg Garmon, P Connor Kornbrath, and DB Kevin Buford.
Iowa started an all-Iowa offensive line today: LT Brandon Scherff (Denison), LG Matt Tobin (Dyersville), C James Ferentz (Iowa City), RG Austin Blythe (Williamsburg), and RT Brett Van Sloten (Decorah).
QB James Vandenberg was 21-33 for 129 yards today. The senior signal caller connected with six different receivers. Vandenberg had a 16-yard rush in the second quarter, equaling a career long. Vandenberg has completed 305-532 pass attempts for 3,666 yards and 28 touchdowns in his career. His 3,666 yards passing ranks ninth in Iowa career history.
Sophomore RB Damon Bullock led the team with 150 yards on 30 attempts today. Both were career bests. Bullock's 23-yard touchdown with 2:15 left in the fourth quarter was his first career touchdown.
WR Kevonte Martin-Manley led the team in catches (6) and WR Keenan Davis led the team in receiving yards (40).
Defensively, Tom Donatell had six tackles and forced his first career fumble. Joe Gaglione also added six tackles and his first career forced fumble. Linebackers James Morris and Anthony Hitches each had a team-high eight stops. DL Joe Gaglione forced his first career fumble, while DL Carl Davis recovered his first fumble on the third play of the third quarter.
Iowa collected a fumble recovery in the third quarter and turned that takeaway into three points. The Hawkeye defense has collected at least one takeaway in 65 of its last 75 games, dating back to 2006. Northern Illinois did not collect a takeaway today.
P Connor Kornbrath punted three times for 124 yards (41.3 avg.) today, including a long of 51 yards in the first period. P John Wienke punted one time for 43 yards.
Iowa was 2-3 in the red zone today, making two field goals and missing another. The Hawkeyes have scored on 151 of the last 171 red zone possessions (101 TDs and 50 FGs), dating back to the Michigan State game in 2008. Iowa is 132-152 combined inside the red zone its last 44 games. Northern Illinois was 2-2 in the red zone (1 FG, 1 TD).
Iowa dominated the time of possession today, 38:42-21:18.
PK Mike Meyer converted a 34-yard field on Iowa's opening possession. Iowa's opening scoring drive consisted of 58 yards on 13 plays in 6:52. RB Damon Bullock had 41 yards rushing on the Hawkeyes' first drive. Northern Illinois did not score on its first possession.
Iowa returns to Iowa City for its home opener against Iowa State for the 60th game in the Cy-Hawk Series. Iowa State defeated Iowa last season in Ames 45-42 in triple overtime, but haven't won in Iowa City, since 2002 and a historic night game in the series.