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Hawks slow down in first road test

[ 0 ] September 14, 2013 |

AMES, IA. — Iowa has played at a faster pace this season, but the Hawkeyes returned power football when it mattered most during a 27-21 victory over Iowa State Saturday at Jack Trice Stadium.

After averaging 67 plays a game last season, Iowa ran off 83 plays Saturday — perfectly maintaining its average of 83 through three games.

In the first two games, Iowa had rushed the ball 60.8 percent of the time. The scales leaned toward the run even more on Saturday. Iowa had 60 rushes to 23 passes while improving to 2-1.

“It was just the flow of the game,” Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said. “It wasn’t like it was a master plan or anything. It was working a little bit, so we just wanted to stay with it.”

Iowa’s final touchdown of the game came on a 15-play drive that included 14 rushes. The possession before, a nine-play touchdown drive, included seven rushes. And a first-half field goal came on a 13-play drive that included 12 rushes. Smash-mouth football at its best.

“We love that,” left tackle Brandon Scherff said. “That’s what we want to do up front.”

Center Austin Blythe said playing with that dominant attitude in the trenches was discussed all week.

“We talked about being tough, physical, wearing the opponents out,” Blythe said. “Putting pressure on them and making them break, just so we can keep running the ball.

“That’s something that we pride ourselves in.”

Iowa’s offensive line play seemed to improve as the game went on.

“You just feel comfortable, with those guys,” Hawkeye quarterback Jake Rudock said.

BREAKING DOWN THE HAWKEYES’ HURRY-UP OFFENSE

FIRST POSSESSION (12:55, first quarter)
• 6 plays – Three rushes (one sack), three passes. Two first downs. Punt.
• Average time per snap — 26.1 seconds
SECOND POSSESSION (7:56, first quarter)
• 8 plays – Six rushes (one sack), two passes. Three first downs. Lost fumble.
• Average time per snap — 24.6 seconds
THIRD POSSESSION (2:27, first quarter)
• 10 plays – Five rushes, five passes. Three first downs. Touchdown.
• Average time per snap — 23.4 seconds
FOURTH POSSESSION (11:07, second)
• 3 plays – One rush, two passes. Punt.
• Average time per snap — 25.3 seconds
FIFTH POSSESSION (8:55, second quarter)
• 15 plays – 13 rushes, one pass, one field-goal attempt. Five first downs. Field goal.
• Average time per snap — 25.7 seconds
SIXTH POSSESSION (:33, second quarter)
• 4 plays – 3 passes, one field-goal attempt. No first downs. Field goal.
• Average time per snap — 26.6 seconds
SEVENTH POSSESSION (14:57, third)
• 3 plays – Two passes, one rush. No first downs.
• Average time per snap — 23.3 seconds
EIGHTH POSSESSION (10:26, third quarter)
• 6 plays — 4 rushes, 2 passes. One first down.
• Average time per snap — 23.6 seconds
NINTH POSSESSION (5:21, third quarter)
• 9 plays – Seven rushes, two passes. Three first downs. Touchdown.
• Average time per snap — 27.5 seconds
10TH POSSESSION (14.43, fourth quarter)
• 15 plays – 14 rushes, one pass. Five first downs. Touchdown.
• Average time per snap — 31.8 seconds
11th POSSESSION (4:27, fourth quarter)
• 3 plays – Three rushes. Punt.
• Average time per snap — 13.0 seconds
12th POSSESSION (2:25, fourth quarter)
• 3 plays – Three rushes. Punt.
• Average time per snap — 28.6.
—Rick Brown

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Category: Iowa Hawkeyes Football

About Rick Brown: Rick Brown covers men's basketball for The Des Moines Register and Hawk Central. He's married and the father of two. He also covers golf for the Register. View author profile.

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