Sept. 18, 2014
- Hawkeye Football Game Day
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa football team hits the road for the first time this season on Friday when it travels to Pennsylvania for Saturday’s final nonconference game against Pittsburgh. The Hawkeyes (2-1) will look to hand the Panthers (3-0) their first defeat of the season.
The team began its preparation for Pittsburgh on Tuesday. Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Greg Davis said the team put in their normal down-and-distance plays in on Tuesday followed by their third down packages on Wednesday.
“I believe we’ve had a good week of work and now it’s time to go out and play,” Davis said.
The team will be playing in different surroundings Saturday with this being its first road game. Davis said focus and attention to detail will be important this weekend.
“We have to go with a focus and understanding that we’re in a hostile environment, in a pro stadium with different markings,” said Davis. “We tried to simulate the markings on the practice fields.”
Pittsburgh ranks fourth in the country in total defense (211.0) and 16th in scoring defense (15.0). Davis said one of the keys on Saturday is to avoid third-and-long situations.
“Their coordinator spent some time in the pros so they do a nice job with their third down nickel package,” Davis said. “They have a couple different looks they can do in that area. They’re a team that is not afraid to go man-to-man in any situation so the challenge is to one, protect, and secondly in the throwing game, the receivers have to beat the man-to-man.”
Last season, Rudock led the Hawkeyes to a 4-1 record in road games. The signal caller completed 69-of-117 passes for 940 yards, throwing 10 touchdowns to only two interceptions in those five contests. Davis believes his success away from Kinnick Stadium begins with his preparation.
“All success starts with preparation at any position,” said Davis. “He does a good job of eliminating the distractions and whether or not we are at home or on the road.”
Adam Amin, John Congemi and Niki Noto will call the action Saturday afternoon. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. (CT) from Heinz Field.