Saturday, November 1, 2014

Happy All Saints Day: Iowa vs. Northwestern on the Big Ten Network at 11 a.m.

Iowa City, IA - - The Iowa Hawkeyes (5-2, 2-1 B1G West) return to action off a 1-1 October and bye week for a five game November slate beginning with Northwestern (3-4, 2-2 B1G West), which has become a competitive series, since the 1995 win by the Wildcats.

Is it a rivalry?

There is no trophy for the victory, but it is symbolic of a rose. With a loss, the opponent becomes a thorn, with a win there is a sense of the bloom of a rose, that you live another day, with the opportunity to compete for a division title.

Northwestern calls this series a rivalry. Northwestern coach Fitzgerald circles this game, due to what the rivalry meant during his playing days at Northwestern.

From 1974 to 1994, Iowa won 21 straight games. The series turned with three games from 1995-1997. All Northwestern wins in the final seasons of J. Hayden Fry at Iowa.

Today, forty years from the beginning of Iowa's 21 season dominance, this game will play a major role on whether Iowa competes for It's first B1G West division title over the next five games?

Forty years ago I enjoyed my first season in Kinnick Stadium. It included a win over Northwestern, a 35-10 win. Iowa has won two straight at Kinnick in this series recently, including last year's 17-10 win in OT.

The Hawkeyes have struggled at times throughout the 2014 season. Falling behind by 10 points in several games. Last year, Iowa took an early 10 point lead, only to find themselves stall. They pulled it together in overtime.

Can Iowa compete for a B1G West division title in 2014? It begins today vs. Northwestern at Kinnick Stadium.

Our pick: either a 31-15 win, or a 13-10 slugfest, that could go either way.

Peace be to you, on All Saints Day! Miss you Dad, his first Northwestern game, since his death.

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