#4 Iowa at #5 Michigan State Postgame Notes

Dec. 5, 2015

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Iowa (12-1, 8-0) fell to Michigan State (12-1, 7-1), 16-13, Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium at the 2015 Big Ten Championship game.

The loss was Iowa’s first this season and snapped a 12-game win streak.

The game set a Big Ten Championship game attendance record of 66,985.

Michigan State scored a one-yard rushing touchdown with 27 seconds left in the fourth quarter. It capped a 22 play, 82-yard, 9:09 drive.

Iowa trailed in the fourth quarter for the first time this season, 9-6, but regained the lead 11 seconds into the fourth quarter on an 85-yard touchdown pass from QB C.J. Beathard to WR Tevaun Smith.

Iowa led 6-3 at the half. It was the lowest points scored by either team in the first half this season. The Hawkeyes have led at half in 12 of 13 games (Iowa State).

The Hawkeyes ran just 16 plays in the second half. Michigan State ran 52 plays.

Michigan State scored a field goal on its opening possession. It marked the first time Iowa trailed at any point in the game since Nov. 7 at Indiana. It was only the third time this season Iowa allowed points on its opponent’s opening possession (three field goals).

Both teams scored three points in the first quarter, both off turnovers. The Hawkeyes have outscored their opponents 71-23 in the first quarter.

Michigan State intercepted Iowa in the end zone in the second quarter. It was Iowa’s first interception in 155 pass attempts.


QB C.J. Beathard lost for the first time in 14 career starts. He was the only quarterback in school history to win his first 13 career starts.

QB C.J. Beathard’s 85-yard touchdown pass to WR Tevaun Smith was Iowa’s longest play from scrimmage this season. The touchdown came on Iowa’s second play of the drive, the first play of the fourth quarter. It is Iowa’s eighth touchdown drive of two plays or fewer this season.

WR Tevaun Smith caught five passes for 110 yards. It is he is second 100-yard receiving game of the season (North Texas, 115). Smith has 1,483 career receiving yards, 19th all-time.

LB Josey Jewell recorded an interception on Michigan State’s second possession. It was his third interception of the season, and Iowa’s 18th. Iowa kicked a field goal following the interception.

K Marshall Koehn scored seven points today to move into a tie for 13th place (David Hudson) on Iowa’s all-time scoring list (166 points). Koehn kicked field goals of 24, 43 yards. He is 8-of-10 on field goal attempts 40-yards or longer.

LB Aaron Mends and LB Bo Bower were credited with a second quarter sack that forced Michigan State to attempt a 52-yard field goal (missed wide left). It was Mends’ first career sack.

WR Matt VandeBerg had two receptions for 14 yards. He has 61 receptions for 639 yards this season, both career highs. He is the 41st player in program history with 600 yards receiving in a single season. Of those 41, only nine had 60 or more receptions.


Michigan State won the toss and deferred to the second half. Iowa received the opening kickoff for the 10th time this season. In 17 seasons as Iowa’s head coach, Kirk Ferentz and the Hawkeyes received the opening kickoff in 172-of-213 games (104-68). Iowa has started the game on defense in 41-of-213 games under Ferentz (23-18).

Instant replay was used four times today.

  1. Iowa down prior to fumble (reversed)
  2. Michigan State completed catch (reversed)
  3. Michigan State first down (confirmed)
  4. Michigan State touchdown (confirmed)


The Hawkeyes postseason destination will be revealed tomorrow (Sunday, Dec. 6). The semifinal pairings and bowl assignments are announced at 11:30 a.m. The final CFP top 25 rankings and New Year’s bowl pairings will be announced at 2 p.m. Both announcements are live on ESPN.

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