Nov. 15, 2008
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — A strong and rested right arm of Purdue quarterback Curtis Painter was trumped by the powerful legs of University of Iowa running back Shonn Greene during a 22-17 Hawkeye victory in front of 67,676 fans on a chilly afternoon inside Kinnick Stadium.
Bowl-bound Iowa improved to 7-4 overall, 4-3 in the Big Ten Conference. The Boilermakers slipped to 3-8, 1-6, leaving lamb-duck head coach Joe Tiller 0-4 in games played in Iowa City.
In a game that became a bit tense near the end, Iowa held on when a desperation pass by Painter sailed into the south bleachers as time expired. Painter was 6 of 8 on the final drive that began with 69 seconds remaining from the Purdue 20.
For the game, `Comeback Curtis’ completed 24 of 30 passes for 190 yards and two touchdowns. Greene was again magnificent for the winners with 30 carries for 211 yards and two touchdowns.
“You want to have good balance so you can stay on your feet even when you get hit,” Greene said. “If you stay low, it makes it hard on defensive guys to get a hold of you. It’s always a physical game when we play Purdue and my hat’s off to their defense.”
There were no shortage of defense heroes for the Hawkeyes. Defensive tackle Mitch King came up with a 9-yard sack of Painter with 32 seconds remaining, forcing the Boilermakers to use their final timeout. Linebacker Pat Angerer compiled nine tackles and intercepted a pass tipped by Broderick Binns at the Iowa 5-yard line with just over seven minutes left in the game and the Hawkeyes leading by 12. Binns also had a fumble recovery one play after Iowa coughed the ball over to the Boilermakers.
“Somehow, some way somebody makes a big play,” UI head coach Kirk Ferentz said. “That was a huge play (by King). That was a big, big play and got them off schedule.”
Purdue finished with 10 more first downs (24-14) a 6:26 advantage in possession time (33:13-26:47) and 31 more plays (84-53) than the Hawkeyes, who dominated the ground with a rushing advantage of 157 yards (258-101) and more importantly, finished with five more points.
Iowa safety Brett Greenwood topped the tackle chart with 14, followed by Jeremiha Hunter with 10 and Bradley Fletcher, Amari Spievey and Angerer with nine apiece. The Hawkeyes had eight tackles loss in the game (for 21 yards).
“We’re thrilled to get the victory. Credit goes to Purdue, they showed up and played an extremely competetive football game. It was a tough football game that went down to the last play. I’m extremely happy for our seniors first and foremost.”
UI head coach Kirk Ferentz
“We’re thrilled to get the victory,” Ferentz said. “Credit goes to Purdue, they showed up and played an extremely competetive football game. It was a tough football game that went down to the last play. I’m extremely happy for our seniors first and foremost.”
Windy and cold playing conditions couldn’t deter Iowa’s offense on its opening drive. After limited the Boilermakers to a five-and-out series, the Hawkeyes took over from their own 32 and methodically marched 68 yards on eight plays to grab a 6-0 lead. Greene had his number called on the first six rushing plays (for 43 yards) and Jewel Hampton finished it off with a 3-yard run and a scoring jaunt over left end from 22 yards with 8:38 left in the first quarter. Trent Mossbrucker’s PAT kick hit the right upright and was no good.
Iowa’s defense held Purdue to another five-play drive that was extended by a pass interference call after a deflected pass was intercepted by Hunter. A turnover following a 6-yard pass completion from Stanzi to Andy Brodell lifted Purdue’s offensive spirits. The Boilermakers converted twice on fourth down during a 17-play, 45-yard drive that ended with a 27-yard field goal by Carson Wiggs, slicing the Hawkeye lead in half, 6-3, with 10:29 left in the half. Purdue’s drive consumed 8:46. Two penalties crippled the Boilermaker drive — the second yellow flag negated a 5-yard touchdown scramble by quarterback Justin Siller.
Greene topped 100 yards for the 11th consecutive game with an awe-inspiring 75-yard touchdown run with 9:38 left in the half. Greene’s first carry of the drive produced five yards, but that was a prelude to a highlight reel carry. Greene took the handoff over the left side and was faced one-on-one with Purdue defensive back Frank Duong. Duong whiffed at a spin move and Greene was off to the races. Mossbrucker misfired on the PAT and the Hawkeyes led 12-3 with 9:38 left in the half.
Clock management and senior leadership helped Purdue sneak within 12-10 at halftime. The Boilermakers used two timeouts on defense and forced an Iowa punt at the 1:59 mark. Painter, who has been injured the past three games, engineered an 8-play, 55-yard scoring drive that used 1:25 and ended with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Desmond Tardy. The Boilermakers were faced with third-and-14 from their own 41 when Iowa’s Bradley Fletcher was flagged for pass interference against Greg Orton in front of the Hawkeye sideline. It was looking like a three-play series for Painter until the penalty. He muffed the snap on his first play, had the ball tipped and eventually caught by center Jared Zwilling for a four-yard loss. His next attempt to Aaron Valentin was incomplete. Painter was 4-for-4 for 42 yards the rest of the drive.
The halftime statistics sheet looked similar to the one printed a week earlier against Penn State. The Boilermakers held a sizeable edge in possession time (19:37 to 10:23) and had 12 first downs to seven by Iowa. The Hawkeyes led the yardage battle (180 to 166), despite running 21 fewer plays than Purdue (42 to 21). Greene gained 126 yards on 13 carries. On the final drive before the break, the Boilermakers limited Greene to a minus-1 yard on four carries.
Stanzi completed 4 of 5 passes in the first half for 31 yards. One of his nicest tosses was a 19-yard completion to Brodell that gave Iowa a first down on a third-and-17 play. For the game Brodell caught four passes for 42 yards.
Yards were hard to come by early in the third quarter for Iowa, but kicker Daniel Murray extended the Hawkeye lead to 15-10 with a 45-yard field goal with 9:14 left in the third. The longest gain on the 10-play, 25-yard drive was a 9-yard pass completion from Stanzi to Brodell.
“To send our seniors out with a win after coming up short the last two years in a row is a good thing.”
UI head coach Kirk Ferentz
Valentin took the ensuing kickoff and with one foot in the end zone and one on the 1, hesitated, then broke off a 64-yard return to the Iowa 36. The Hawkeye defense held, but a 34-yard punt by Wiggs placed the ball at the Hawkeye 1.
Purdue forced a second fumble from an Iowa receiver — this time by Derrell Johnson-Koulianos after a 10-yard completion that was recovered by Torri Williams at the Boilermaker 43. Purdue returned the favor on the next play when running back Ralph Bolden fumbled the ball right into the arms of Binns.
At one point in the game, the Boilermaker defense held Greene to nine yards on eight carries. That became a distant memory on Iowa’s first drive of the final quarter. Greene toted the ball three straight times for 36 yards, scoring on a 14-yard touchdown run after burying a Purdue defender into the Kinnick sod before breaking outside left and reaching the pylon with 12:48 left in the game. Murray came in and made the PAT, giving Iowa a 22-10 lead.
With the wind at its back, Purdue called on Painter to relieve Siller again and he completed 8 of 10 passes for 52 yards, but a huge effort by King, Binns and Angerer bailed out the Hawkeyes. On first-and-goal from 4, Painter attempted a middle screen. He was hurried by King, Binns batted the ball in the air and Angerer intercepted at the Hawkeye 5.
The Boilermakers made it a five-point game at 22-17 after Painter completed 5 of 6 passes for 37 yards during an 8-play, 45-yard touchdown drive. He connected with Orton on an 8-yard scoring toss with 3:40 left in the game.
Hampton hurt Purdue early in the game with touchdown run and he delivered another knock-down blow by returning a kickoff 52 yards to the Boilermaker 43 after Purdue fought back to make it a one-touchdown game.
The traveling trophy Floyd of Rosedale will be at stake Saturday, Nov. 22, when Iowa concludes the regular season at Minnesota. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. in the final collegiate football game inside the Metrodome. The Hawkeyes — winners of six of the last seven in the series — won 21-16 last season in Iowa City.