WEEK 12: 3:00 p.m., Kinnick Stadium
FIVE THINGS YOU SHOULD SEE
Thompson’s arm: Casey Thompson showed a strong arm behind center for Nebraska. Despite missing two games, the 6-foot transfer from Texas enters the Iowa game and needs 295 passing yards to break into the top 10 on the Cornhuskers’ single-season list. He has threw for 2,129 yards and 14 touchdowns this season while receiving 10 interceptions. Thompson, a 10-game starter in Texas, has also had five touchdowns this season.
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Lachey’s chance: With senior Sam LaPorta out with a leg injury, Luke Lachey is expected to make the first start of his career against Nebraska. The tight end as a sophomore had career highlights with five receptions for 77 yards in Iowa’s 13-10 win in Minnesota last weekend. He ranks third on the team in receptions with Arland Bruce IV and catches 18 passes for 273 yards and two touchdowns.
Grant’s Feet: Nebraska’s Anthony Grant takes the field at Kinnick Stadium and needs 91 yards to become the Cornhuskers’ first 1,000-yard rusher since Devine Ozigbo in 2018 won the junior college national offensive player of the year when he rushed for 1,730 yards a year ago . He currently averages 82.6 rushing yards per game, ranking fifth in the Big Ten.
Defensive difference: The Hawkeye defense is trying to get back to its core by stopping the run after Minnesota rushed for 312 yards against Iowa last weekend. Yardage was the most allowed on the ground this season by a defense that allows 108.9 rushing yards per game and has kept seven opponents under 100 yards this season.
Trophy line III: With the Big Ten West Division title for Iowa, the Hawkeyes are looking to continue a four-game winning streak while playing their third straight trophy game. Iowa won the Heartland Trophy and Floyd of Rosedale in the past two weeks with victories over Wisconsin and Minnesota. The Heroes Trophy goes to the winner of the Iowa-Nebraska game. While the last four games between teams have been decided by a touchdown or fewer, the Hawkeyes have held the trophy with victories over the Cornhuskers for the past seven years.
IOWA (7-4, 5-3)
Arland Bruce IV;11;47;4.3;1
Arland Bruce IV;18;184;10.2;1
INTERCEPT: Cooper DeJean 4, Kaevon Merriweather 3, Jack Campbell 2
BAGS: Joe Evans 6, Luke Van Ness 6, Deontae Craig 4.5, Logan Lee 3
TACKLE: Jack Campbell 110, Seth Benson 80, Cooper DeJean 67, Quinn Schulte 63, Kaevon Merriweather 45
POINT RETURN: Arland Bruce IV 17-125-7.4, Cooper DeJean 7-123-17.6
KICKOFF RETURNS: Kaleb Johnson 11-271-24.6, Riley Moss 4-93-23.3
NEBRASKA (3-8, 2-6)
INTERCEPT: Malcolm Hartzog 2, Marques Buford Jr 2
BAGS: Garrett Nelson 5.5, Ochaun Mathis 3.5, Ty Robinson 2
TACKLE: Luke Reimer (86), Myles Farmer (68), Isaac Gifford (62), Garrett Nelson (61), Marques Buford Jr (59).
POINT RETURN: Trey Palmer 4-36-9.0
KICKOFF RETURNS: Tommi Hill 12-221-18.4, Zach Weinmaster 5-85-17.0
Nebraska WR Trey Palmer vs. Iowa CB Cooper DeJean: After 41 receptions in three seasons at LSU, the 6-foot-1, 190-pound transfer made an immediate impact on the Cornhuskers. He has 62 receptions for 878 yards and seven touchdowns this season for Nebraska, including nine catches of 30 yards or more. He will test the back end of an Iowa defense that has blasted 10 passes this season. The Hawkeyes’ DeJean finished two of those interceptions and three others. The sophomore leads the secondary with 50 tackles this season.