Oct. 19, 2014
- Hawkeye Football Game Day
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- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
By DARREN MILLER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — A crowd of 48,373 filled Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium on Saturday and they weren’t all celebrating Homecoming for the University of Maryland.
A large contingent of Hawkeye football fans converged on College Park, Maryland, and University of Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz noticed.
“It’s a historic game, the first time the two schools had met, plus a great venue for people from the Midwest to go and spend a couple days,” Ferentz said Sunday during an exclusive interview with hawkeyesports.com. “The turnout was fantastic. They made a lot of noise and we appreciate that support. Anywhere we go on the road it seems Hawkeye fans turn out and yesterday was one of the bigger gatherings that we have had.”
Iowa featured a fast start for the second week in a row. On Oct. 11 against Indiana, the Hawkeyes led 21-0 en route to a 45-39 victory. Against Maryland, the Hawkeyes led 14-0 midway through the first quarter, but eventually fell, 38-31.
Ferentz called the early run “good team football” as Iowa turned an interception into a 7-0 lead. On its second drive, the Hawkeyes went 80 yards on seven plays for a two touchdown advantage.
“I don’t know if we relaxed a little bit at that point, but we lost it somewhere along the way,” Ferentz said. “The bottom line is we are playing better offensively, we did a lot of good things yesterday, but unfortunately most of the fourth quarter we were playing in a way we don’t like to play. We were down and having to throw every down, but it is going to happen in football at times. The guys fought hard, they battled back, did some good things in the running and passing game, and hopefully we can build on that and be ready for the last five ball games.”
The Hawkeyes rolled to 433 yards of offense against the Terrapins with 317 coming through the air.
Iowa enters its second — and final — bye week with a record of 5-2 overall, 2-1 in the Big Ten Conference. Its next game will be Nov. 1 against Northwestern (3-4, 2-2). The Wildcats are also idle this week.
“It gets down to a five-game schedule now for us,” Ferentz said. “We sit at 5-2, we were hoping to be a little better than that, but we’re not. The big thing we have to do now is take this bye week, try to improve so we can play our best football the last five weeks. The team has been improving, they have been practicing better — it didn’t all show up yesterday against Maryland — but the big thing is we have to keep our focus on improvement, have a good period, and get ready for a challenging five-game run.”