Hawkeyes Struggle, Fall to Wildcats

Nov. 4, 2006

IOWA CITY — — From Kirk Ferentz’s perspective, it was simple: Northwestern was well-coached and executed and the Iowa Hawkeyes weren’t and didn’t.

“It starts with me. I didn’t have the team ready to play. The reality is that we’re 6-4 and we look like a 6-4 football team,” said Ferentz after the Hawkeyes’ 21-7 loss to the Wildcats Saturday in Kinnick Stadium. The loss dropped Iowa’s overall record to 6-4 and its mark in Big Ten Conference play to 2-4.

Iowa looked and played out of sync all day. The visiting Wildcats didn’t and built a 14-0 halftime lead after running back Tyrrell Sutton scored on a five-yard run at 10:16 of the first quarter and quarterback C.J. Bacher found Eric Peterman on a seven-yard lob with 13:48 remaining.

“They looked very sharp during the first half in particular. They were crisp in their execution and we struggled,” said Ferentz, who noted that the coaching staff was very impressed when watching the tape of NU’s quarterback. “We were impressed with his ability. He may not run as well as the others, but he throws the ball well. And, when they start clicking with their passing game, it really opens up the run in their scheme.”

Northwestern outgained the home team 443 yard to 264. Bacher passed for 218 yards. The Wildcats ran seemingly at will for 225 yards, paced by Sutton’s 168 yards on 28 carries.

Iowa tried to make it interesting, cutting the lead in half with a little more than three minutes to play in the third quarter when Damian Sims scored on a three-yard run. However, the Hawkeyes never got near the goal line in the final quarter.

Iowa quarterback Drew Tate completed 18 of 27 passes for 147 yards. Albert Young gained 72 yards on 18 carries. Damian Sims added another 48 yards. Freshman receiver Dominique Douglas caught seven passes for 78 yards and became Iowa’s all-time leader in receptions and yards as a freshman.

Douglas’s seven receptions were a season-high for an Iowa receiver. The Detroit native now has 39 receptions for 534 yards. Kahlil Hill held the previous school record of receptions (35), while Danan Hughes had the record for receiving yards (471). Both Hill and Hughes were redshirt freshmen.

“We looked like the fat cats and they played hungry. I assume the responsibility for that happening. I have to do a better job of coaching and the coaching staff, collectively, needs to do a better job of coaching,” said Ferentz.

“We didn’t match their tempo of play and, when that occurs, you get the result you deserve. It hurts and doesn’t sit well, obviously.”

Ferentz said there is no pixy dust. “We have to go back to work and get better,” he said.

He also said his team has struggled all season to find consistecy. It could be argued that some of that is a by-product of a revolving door at the training room. “If you choose to, you can use that as a crutch, an excuse. We not interested in excuses,” Iowa’s veteran head coach added flatly.

The Hawkeyes return to action against Wisconsin next Saturday at Kinnick. Game time is set for shortly after 11 a.m. (Iowa time).