MADISON, Wisconsin – The University of Iowa football team defeated Wisconsin,15-6, on Saturday evening at Camp Randall Stadium.
The Hawkeyes outrushed the Badgers 200-104 as Leshon Williams racked up a team leading 174 yards on the ground and a score. Kaleb Johnson added 35 yards.
“It gave us a lot of momentum,” said Williams. “We are going to keep getting better too. It is a stepping stone, each and every week. As y’all see we progress every week. Never know next weekend might be a lot. We are going to celebrate today, but tomorrow we get back to work.”
Deacon Hill connected on 6-of-14 passing attempts for 37 yards. Erick All led the team in receiving yards with 19 on two receptions.
Defensively, Jay Higgins led the team with 13 tackles (7 solo). Sebastian Castro added seven tackles including two for a loss and an interception. Yahya Black, Kyler Fisher and Aaron Graves each forced a fumble.
“That is our standard,” said Castro. “It doesn’t surprise us. That is how we practice. Just like any other day. Practice hard and really just another day.”
Drew Stevens was 2-for-2 on field goals. Tory Taylor had 10 punts for 506 yards with six being inside the 20 and five of 50+ yards.
QUOTING KIRK FERENTZ
“This game turned out basically what you would expect. Especially coming up here. Just a tough hard fought game by both teams. Extremely proud of our players, and coaching staff, but mostly our players. Their effort was outstanding. I think they showed a lot of toughness throughout the game, and really happy about that.
Tested numerous times during the course of the game, the guys didn’t flinch, stayed poised and hung together which is what you have to do in those situations. Happy about that, lot of grit there. In the locker room it was great to see a bunch of guys feeling really good about themselves. That’s what happens when you have to fight for something, and they certainly did that. Want them to enjoy the bus ride home, enjoy what is left of the night. We will go back to work tomorrow, just like we always do. Look at the tape and try to learn some things there.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
- On their opening possession the Wisconsin offense drove down to the Iowa 15-yard line but turned the ball over on downs when Cooper DeJean stuffed a fourth down run attempt.
- After a scoreless first quarter the Hawkeyes found the end zone with 11:49 left in the second half. Leshon Williams broke open an 82-yard rush to cap a three-play 90-yard drive.
- Wisconsin got on the board with a 36-yard field goal. The score capped a 13-play 60-yard drive that elapsed 5:01.
- The Badgers cut into the Iowa lead with a 52-yard field goal with 3:58 remaining in the third quarter.
- Drew Stevens connected on a 48-yard field goal with 13:08 remaining in the game. The Hawkeyes used six plays over 2:44 to drive 28-yards to set up the score.
- The Hawkeyes added two points to their lead as Yahya Black sacked the Badger QB in the end zone forcing a fumble and the safety with 12:15 remaining in the game.
- The Iowa defense put the game on ice as Aaron Graves forced a fumble with 3:01 left in the contest.
- Drew Stevens took advantage of the field position and connected on a 40-yard field goal with 1:55 left.
- Sebastian Castro added an interception in the final 40 seconds of the game and the Hawkeyes ran out the clock.
- RB Leshon Williams recorded his second 100-yard game of the season (and career), finishing with a career-high 174 yards on 25 attempts and one touchdown – an 82-yard run in the second quarter.
- The 82-yarder is Iowa’s longest rush since 1997 (82, Tavian Banks vs. Iowa State).
- It is the Hawkeyes’ longest rush all-time against Wisconsin (previous best was Tyler Goodson in 2020 (80 yards)
- The rush is Williams’ career long, Iowa’s longest play of the season and the fourth longest rush in the nation this season.
- It is the first time since 2021 that Iowa has had a 100-yard rusher in consecutive games (Tyler Goodson).
- It is the first time since 2020 that Iowa had two different 100-yard rushers in consecutive games (Goodson, Mekhi Sargent).
- LB Jay Higgins finished with 10 tackles, his fifth double-digit tackle game this season (and sixth of his career).
- DL Yahya Black had a forced fumble in the end zone, which resulted in a Wisconsin safety.
- DL Aaron Graves had a forced fumble.
- P Tory Taylor had 10 punts for 506 yards for a 50.6 average. Five punts traveled 50+ yards (two 60+ yard punts), including a 62-yarder, tying a season-long, and four that were downed inside the 20. (Current Career high punts is 10 for 479 yards, 52.3 avg).
- K Drew Stevens made a 48-yard field goal in the fourth quarter – his second-longest make of the season. He is 12-of-15 in field goal attempts in 2023.
- Stevens has two or more field goals in a single game in nine career games.
- DB Sebastian Castro registered his second career interception in the fourth quarter.
- Iowa’s rushing attack finished with 200 yards against Wisconsin – the program’s most against the Badgers since 2008 (254 yards).
- Iowa shut out Wisconsin in the first half. It was just the fourth time in the last 20 years that the Badgers were shutout in the first half in Camp Randall Stadium.o Iowa knocked Wisconsin starting QB Tanner Mordecai out of the game late in the first half.
- Iowa recorded a safety in the fourth quarter on a Yahya Black forced fumble (and Wisconsin recovered). It is Iowa’s second safety of the season (Western Michigan) and the team’s second straight year with two safeties.o Iowa’s defense has scored 10 points in 2023 and 50 points since the start of the 2022 season.
- Iowa has held seven teams without a touchdown since the start of the 2022 season.
- The unit has allowed one touchdown or less in five of the first seven games of 2023 and 14 of the last 20 games.
- Iowa has allowed 14 or fewer points in 13 of its last 20 games.
- The Hawkeye defense allowed 332 yards of total offense. It is the 21st consecutive game the unit has allowed 400 or fewer yards, the longest active streak nationally.
- The Hawkeyes have played in front of seven consecutive sellouts to open the 2023 season.
- Iowa won the toss and elected to receive. The Hawkeye have played 308 games under head coach Kirk Ferentz. Iowa has opened the game on offense 226 times (145-81). The Hawkeyes have opened the game on defense 82 times (47-35).
The Hawkeyes return home to host Minnesota in a battle for the Floyd of Rosedale on Oct. 21. Game time is set for 2:30 p.m. (CT) on NBC.