A stinging loss, top rookie performances and Super Bowl tickets for a Pleasant Valley student are all part of today’s Hawkeye 10@10.
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Here is today’s Hawkeye 10@10:
1. Saturday’s loss to Northwestern was a kick to gut for the Iowa football team.
Cornerback Michael Ojemudia described it as the “biggest wakeup of the season’’ for the Hawkeyes.
“If we go downhill from here, it’s going to be a really bad season,’’ Ojemudia said.
Center Keegan Render said the little things continue to plague the Hawkeyes.
“It keeps coming back to the little details, but at the same time, that’s what makes Iowa between a 10-win team and an eight-win team,’’ Render said. “It’s things so small, but at the same time, you can’t overlook them. We’ve got to go back and get the consistency down.’’
2. Among the biggest frustrations felt by Iowa players in dealing with Saturday’s 14-10 loss to the Wildcats was that they felt prepared for whatever Northwestern sent their way.
“We practiced everything they had,’’ defensive end A.J. Epenesa said. “I know I got caught in a spot where I was kind of stuck in the middle when I should have had the quarterback. I got there late, but they got the first down. We’ve got to finish, and that’s an example of me not finishing and doing my job.’’
3. The 165 yards that Northwestern freshman Isaiah Bowser picked up in Saturday’s win at Iowa were the most yards gained by a back against the Hawkeyes in 20 games.
That dates to the 211 yards that Saquon Barkley of Penn State gained on 28 carries against Iowa last season.
Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor is the only other back to top 100 yards on the ground against Iowa this season, rushing for 113 yards on 25 carries in the Badgers’ 28-17 win over the Hawkeyes on Sept. 22.
The Hawkeyes allowed only two other 100-yard rushing performances between those efforts, both going for 157 yards.
Taylor ran for that many against Iowa last season in Madison and Boston College’s A.J. Dillon matched that effort in the Pinstripe Bowl on 32 runs.
Bowser picked up his yards on 31 carries Saturday.
4. The Wildcats did what the Wildcats do to earn Saturday’s win, something that made stomaching another loss harder to take for Iowa players.
“They had some good play calls against our play calls,’’ Iowa receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette said. “They went out and executed. They’re a good team, well coached, and they go out there and they know who they are. They’re just going to attack on every play.’’
That limited the Iowa offense early and often.
“Tough day,’’ quarterback Nate Stanley said.
5. Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald took some time to reflect after his team clinched the Big Ten West Division title with Saturday’s win at Iowa.
The win, combined with losses earlier in the day by Wisconsin and Purdue, assured the Wildcats of a spot in the Big Ten title game for the first time in the program’s history.
“This team has overcome a ton of adversity. If you start the season the way we did with our quarterback (Clayton Thorson) coming off of major knee surgery, it was a big deal,’’ Fitzgerald said.
“We got beat up and had a bunch of injuries and we had some tough games at the beginning. I’m proud of our leadership and proud of our seniors.’’
In addition to Thorson's injury, the Wildcats overcame the career-ending loss of starting running back Jeremy Larkin and on Saturday, played without two starting defensive backs against Iowa.
6. Pleasant Valley student Parker Kress is headed to the Super Bowl. Kress, a former Kid Captain, was presented two tickets to the 2019 Super Bowl by former Hawkeye and current Denver linebacker Josey Jewell during Saturday’s game at Kinnick Stadium.
Jewell was honored during the game as the 2017 recipient of the Lott IMPACT Trophy, given a ring the Lott Foundation during a timeout in the first half.
The organization also presented a replica of the Trophy that Jewell received last December to the school in addition to a $25,000 check for Iowa’s general scholarship fund.
7. The starting times for Iowa’s final two regular season football games are now set.
Saturday’s game at Illinois will kickoff at 2:30 p.m. and the game will be televised by BTN.
The Hawkeyes’ regular-season finale against Nebraska on Nov. 23 had previously been announced for an 11 a.m. kickoff and a telecast by Fox.
8. Rookies Ben Niemann and Josh Jackson came up big for their teams Sunday, highlighting the work of former Iowa players in the NFL.
Niemann led Kansas City with six tackles in the Chiefs win over Arizona while Jackson’s work included seven tackles, including five solo stops, for the Packers in a win over Miami.
Also in the Green Bay game, Mike Daniels finished with three tackles for the Packers and former Hawkeye A.J. Derby caught one pass for 13 yards for the Dolphins.
Elsewhere, Micah Hyde had an interception and two tackles for Buffalo in its win over the Jets and Desmond King finished with three tackles and returned a pair of kicks for 41 yards for the Chargers in a win over Oakland.
9. Tyler Wiegers led Eastern Michigan to a sixth win and bowl eligibility Saturday.
The former Hawkeye quarterback completed 15-of-23 passes for 129 yards in a 27-7 win over Akron that moved Eastern Michigan to 6-5 on the season.
Another former Iowa quarterback also continued his winning ways.
Ryan Boyle led Indiana State to its fourth straight win, completing 12-of-22 passes for 86 yards and two scores and rushing for 46 yards on nine carries in a win over Illinois State.
Former Iowa defensive end Romeo McKnight led the Redbirds in tackles in that game with nine.
Elsewhere, Brandon Snyder had his first interception for South Dakota State along with five tackles in a win over Southern Illinois, Angelo Garbutt finished with five tackles for Missouri State in a loss to North Dakota State and Jalen Embry finished with seven tackles for Northern Illinois in its win over Toledo.
10. At least the sun is expected to be shining Saturday when Iowa visits Illinois.
The current National Weather Service forecast for game day at Memorial Stadium calls for partly sunny skies and a high temperature of 36 degrees.