|IOWA vs. MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE|
|DATE||Saturday, Sept. 28 | 11 a.m. CT|
|LOCATION||Iowa City, Iowa | Kinnick Stadium (69,500)|
|RADIO | LISTEN||Hawkeye Radio Network | Hawkeye All-Access|
1st and 10
1: QB Nate Stanley has six touchdown passes and no interceptions in 2019. He has attempted 111 passes without throwing an interception, the sixth longest active streak in the country. He has 58 career touchdowns passes, third all-time in program history. He trails Chuck Long (74) and Drew Tate (61) on the all-time list.
2: QB Nate Stanley has started the last 29 games at quarterback, and the Hawkeyes have averaged 29.6 points per game in those starts. That average ranks fifth in school history, and 10th nationally among active quarterbacks.
3: DE A.J. Epenesa leads a defense that ranks fourth in the Big Ten in scoring defense (10.3) and total defense (262.7). Epenesa had one sack and four quarterback hurries in Week 2. He led the Big Ten and ranked ninth in the country with 10.5 sacks in 2018.
4: WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette leads the team in receptions (11), receiving yards (194) and touchdowns (3). He set a career-high with 113 receiving yards in Week 2.
5: DB Michael Ojemudia is tied for the Big Ten lead with two interceptions. The Hawkeyes’ three interceptions ties for fifth in the Big Ten. Iowa led the Big Ten and tied for second in the country in 2018 with 20 interceptions. Over the last three seasons, no school has more interceptions than Iowa. The Hawkeyes have 44 interceptions since 2017. Boston College is second with 43.
6: RB Mekhi Sargent leads the team in carries (40) and rushing yards (208), ties for second in receptions (9), and ranks third in receiving yards (102). His 310 all-purpose yards lead the team.
7: On Sept. 28, 1957, Iowa scored a school record 70 points hosting Utah State (70-14). The Hawkeyes have scored in every quarter this season (12 quarters).
8: K Keith Duncan is 8-of-8 on field goal attempts. He is one of five kickers in the country to be perfect on at least eight field goal attempts. His eight field goals made ties for the Big Ten lead. Duncan is 4-of-4 on field goal attempts 40-yards or longer.
9: Iowa has won 10 straight non-conference games since the 2017 season opener. Iowa has won six straight overall, its longest streak since winning the first 12 games of 2015.
10: Iowa is off to a 3-0 start for the third straight year, and the ninth time in the Ferentz era. The Hawkeyes are chasing their fifth 4-0 start under head coach Kirk Ferentz (2003, 2006, 2009, 2015). Iowa went on to win 10 or more games in 2003, 2009, and 2015.
Iowa has played 1,249 games since beginning football in 1889. Iowa’s overall record is 653-557-39 (.538). That includes a 407-221-16 (.644) record in home games, a 246-336-23 (.426) record in games away from Iowa City, a 330-378-25 (.467) mark in Big Ten games and a 291-186-15 (.607) record in Kinnick Stadium.
When Iowa hosts Minnesota on Nov. 16, it will mark the 130th anniversary of Iowa football. The Hawkeyes played their first football game on Nov. 16, 1889, against Grinnell.
Saturday is the first ever meeting between the two schools. Iowa is 6-1 all-time against current Conference USA. The Hawkeyes defeated North Texas 62-16 in their last meeting against Conference USA (Sept. 26, 2015 at Kinnick Stadium).
STANLEY CLIMBS SCHOOL AND CONFERENCE CHARTS
QB Nate Stanley has six touchdown passes and no interceptions in 2019. He completed three touchdown passes in the season opener against Miami, Ohio, and three more in Week 2 against Rutgers. He has 58 career touchdowns passes, third all-time in program history. He trails Chuck Long (74) and Drew Tate (61) on the all-time list.
Stanley has 16 career multi-touchdown games. He has 10 career games with at least three passing touchdowns. Only Long has more in program history (11). He has started the last 29 games at quarterback, and the Hawkeyes have averaged 29.6 points per game in those starts. That average ranks fifth in school history, and 10th nationally among active quarterbacks.
Stanley has attempted 111 passes without throwing an interception, the ninth longest active streak in the country.
Stanley threw 26 touchdown passes in 2018, second most in the Big Ten, one shy of tying Chuck Long (1985) for the most in single season school history, and tied for second most all-time in single season history. Stanley also threw 26 touchdown passes in 2017. Stanley’s 52 touchdown passes from 2017-18 are the most ever in school history over a two-year span. Long tossed 49 touchdown passes from 1984 (22) to 1985 (27).
Stanley threw for a career-high 2,852 yards in 2018, the seventh-highest single-season total in school history. He ranks seventh in career passing yards (6,040) and career total offense (5,969).
Stanley is named to six preseason watch lists and listed on the preseason Big Ten third team by Phil Steele.
DE A.J. Epenesa leads a defense that ranks fourth in the Big Ten in scoring defense (10.3) and total defense (262.7). Epenesa had one sack and four quarterback hurries in Week 2. He led the Big Ten and ranked ninth in the country with 10.5 sacks in 2018.
Iowa’s defense allowed just five first downs against Rutgers in Week 2. That ties for the fewest allowed in the Kirk Ferentz era (Syracuse, 2007). Rutgers’ 125 yards of total offense ranks as the fifth lowest total in the Ferentz era.
Epenesa is named to four preseason All-America first teams, is listed on six preseason watch lists, and is preseason Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year by CollegeFootballNews.com.
Epenesa recorded at least one sack in nine of 13 games last season and was named first-team All-Big Ten by league media, and second-team All-Big Ten by league coaches. He ranked second in the conference and 16th nationally in forced fumbles (4), and ranked fourth in the Big Ten in tackles for loss. He totaled 37 tackles, four pass breakups, eight QB pressures, and a blocked punt in 2018. He recovered his own forced fumble and returned it 19 yards for a touchdown at Illinois.
The Hawkeyes ranked third in the Big Ten last season with 35 sacks, the second highest single-season total in the Ferentz era (2002, 40).
RETURN TO SENDER
WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette has been named to the Paul Hornung Award watch list, an honor bestowed to the most versatile player in college football.
Smith-Marsette leads the team in receptions (11), receiving yards (194) and touchdowns (3). He set a career-high with 113 receiving yards in Week 2.
Smith-Marsette averages 28.9 yards on 31 career kickoff returns. The Big Ten record of average kickoff return yardage (minimum 40 returns) is 28.8, set by Stan Brown of Purdue (1968-70).
In 2018, Smith-Marsette led the Big Ten and ranked No. 2 in the country, averaging 29.5 yards on 24 kickoff returns. He was named Rodgers-Dwight Return Specialist of the Year in the Big Ten Conference. He had 23 receptions for 361 yards and three touchdowns. His 15.7 yards per catch led the Hawkeyes (minimum 20 receptions).
SARGENT LEADS RUNNING BACK BY COMMITTEE
RB Mekhi Sargent leads the team in carries (40) and rushing yards (208), ties for second in receptions (9), and ranks third in receiving yards (102). His 310 all-purpose yards lead the team. He has started the last seven games and is named on the Doak Walker Award Preseason Watch List.
RB Toren Young (22), RB Tyler Goodson (22) both have 20-plus carries. Young leads Iowa with 5.5 yards per carry. Goodson has 22 carries and six receptions. His 28 combined touches ranks second on the team to Sargent (49). Iowa averages 173.0 rushing yards per game, sixth in the Big Ten.
Juniors Ivory Kelly-Martin, Sargent, and Young shared the workload in 2018. The trio combined for 392 carries, 1,723 rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns (nine by Sargent, five by Young, and two by Kelly-Martin). Sargent had 40.6 percent of the carries (159-745), Young had 34.7 percent of the attempts (136-637), and Kelly-Martin has 24.7 percent of the carries (97-341).
GRAND THEFT SECONDARY
DB Michael Ojemudia is tied for the Big Ten lead with two interceptions. He intercepted a pass in each of the first two weeks. LB Djimon Colbert recorded the first interception of his career in Week 2.
The Hawkeyes’ three interceptions ties for fifth in the Big Ten. Iowa led the Big Ten and tied for second in the country in 2018 with 20 interceptions. Over the last three seasons, no school has more interceptions than Iowa. The Hawkeyes have 44 interceptions since 2017. Boston College is second with 43.
Entering this season, Iowa has at least one interception return for a touchdown in each of the last 11 seasons, and 16 of the last 18 seasons.
DUNCAN NAMED BIG TEN SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
K Keith Duncan was named Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week and Lou Groza Award Star of the Week on Sept. 16 following his performance at Iowa State. Duncan connected on a career-best four field goals at Iowa State. His final kick from 39 yards provided the margin of victory with 4:51 remaining in the fourth quarter. He also connected from 25 yards on Iowa’s first drive of the game and from 40 yards on the final play of the first half. He nailed a 42-yarder late in the third quarter.
Duncan has made all eight field goal attempts and 8-of-8 PAT attempts. He leads the team in scoring with 32 points. Duncan has made four kicks of at least 40 yards. He is seeing his first action since 2016, when he made 9-11 field goal attempts and 38-39 PAT attempts (one was blocked).
The Big Ten weekly honor is the second of his career. He was previously recognized in 2016, earning the weekly honor following Iowa’s 14-13 win over Michigan. Duncan contributed two field goals in that win, including the game-winner from 33 yards on the final play of the game.
D.J. JOHNSON NAMED C0-BIG TEN FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK
DB D.J. Johnson was named Big Ten Co-Freshman of the Week on Sept. 16 following his performance at Iowa State. In his second career start, Johnson recorded a career-high eight tackles, including six solo tackles and two assists, and added two pass break-ups. The Big Ten weekly honor is the first of his career.
WIN, GRADUATE, DO IT RIGHT
Ten Hawkeyes wear a decal on their helmets indicating they have received their undergraduate degrees from the University of Iowa. The graduates include Drew Cook, John Milani, Landan Paulsen, Levi Paulsen, Colton Rastetter, Brady Reiff, Brady Ross, Ryan Schmidt, Jackson Subbert, and Nate Wieting.
HAWK TALK WITH KIRK FERENTZ
Head Coach Kirk Ferentz is featured on “Hawk Talk with Kirk Ferentz” each week during the regular season. The radio call-in show is hosted by Gary Dolphin, the play-by-play voice of the Iowa Hawkeyes. The show airs live each Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. from VUE Rooftop at the Hilton Garden Inn in Iowa City. There is no show during the Hawkeyes’ bye weeks (Wednesday, Sept. 18 and Wednesday, Oct. 30).
Iowa football hosts Minnesota in the battle for Floyd of Rosedale on Saturday, Nov. 16. Fans are encouraged to wear black for the Blackout game, and it is the annual military appreciation celebration. Active duty military and veterans are eligible for a military ticket discount. Click here for tickets and pre-paid parking and additional game information.