Iowa Football Stock Watch: ice in their veins

That Hawkeye team man. That HAWKEYE TEAM! I wonder what it’s taken on our health this year watching this team either find ways to lose early in the year only to come out in the back half of the schedule and find ways to win ? I, for one, was DIE on Saturday as I absorbed everything this year’s iteration of the fight for Floyd threw at Hawkeye fans. Early happiness quickly turned to worry. Worries turned into self-esteem issues. Doubts about self worth turned to misery and disgust. And then I was immediately happy again. Which creature on planet earth experiences these emotional rollercoasters every week!? At the end of the day, this is the life I chose, so I’m fine with it. And for all the national pundits who continue to mock this program for the way it wins football games, as if winning a game the way it does matters more than winning the way Iowa is right now…

On Stock Watch.

topping up

Jack Campell

Last week I called Jack Campbell a “Legion leader”. After his performance on Saturday I’m ready to revise that to a “Legend Among Legions”. Campbell’s fourth-quarter exploits in Minneapolis have propelled him to the top of the list of linebackers to play at the University of Iowa. je. I’m not old enough to have ever seen Larry Station live, but I don’t need to be. Jack Campbell is the tallest linebacker to grace the gridiron at the University of Iowa. This season I’ve been fortunate enough to sit down at my table and write a few words about this man every week, and every time I’m stumped. The entire 2022 senior class was why this team removed a home win over Nebraska from a second straight Big Ten West title, but still, they’re all looking to Campbell. Another 10 duels on Saturday brought Jack over the century mark for the second time in a row. The greatest Iowa linebacker of all time deserves to be a consensus All-American, and I’m fully prepared to rant in front of the House of Powers if he isn’t.

Sam Laporta

Although the All Big Ten tight end only managed 15 minutes before being eliminated with a leg injury, Sam Laporta left his mark on the game. Sam led both teams in reception yards, with 95 getting just four receptions. His first play of the game for 58 yards set the tone for a first quarter in which the Hawkeyes dominated both sides of the game. After the first drive resulted in a field goal, Laporta caught a crucial fourth downpass from Spencer Petras and rumbled another 24 yards to the Minnesota 24 for an Iowa score. Hopefully the senior gets to attend his last home game at Kinnick Stadium against the Huskers. He was the only consistent attacker for the team all season and it would be a great loss to lose him forever. But…

Luke Lachey

…the Hawks still have The Bull. When Laporta went down, Lachey got up. Luke led the Hawkeyes in receptions with 5 and converted those opportunities into 77 yards. Along with his performance against the Wolverines, Saturday was one of his best of his young career. More of a true tight end build than Laporta, Lachey can take a hit down the middle. This was evident on what might be the biggest offensive play of the game for the Hawkeyes, when after a 4th quarter Jack Campbell interception, Lachey caught a 33-yard pass up the seam, took a shot off a Gopher save and held on to the ball A few games later, Iowa ended the game with a 22-yard field goal from Drew Stevens. If Laporta misses the game against the Cornhuskers, the Hawkeyes will need Lachey to have a big game if they want to make it back to Indy.

Spencer Petras

It wasn’t great, but it was what the Hawkeyes needed. Iowa fans have been clamoring for a stat like this from Petras for some time. Spencer was 15/24 for 221 yards and no TDs, but no picks either. Would it have been nice to get a passing score? Sure, but I’ll take a trip any day of the week with a 62.5% completion rate with no sales. Spencer’s 9.2 yards per completion is also a great number for this Hawkeye offense. Much of that came from short passes converted into long wins, but it all counts the same. If Iowa gets that stat two more times from Petras with a few touchdowns, Iowa could make this season very special.

Cooper Dejean

Dejean had another fine statistical day, adding 7 more tackles to his season total. However, I have him on this list for his ability to put Mo Ibrahim down on countless occasions. Each time Mo broke loose, Cooper popped up from the bottom of the TV screen, rolling him over and preventing a touchdown. In a game decided by three points, that kind of effort deserves recognition. Dejean needs to be sharp this week as Nebraska brings a decent passing attack to Iowa City, led by quarterback Casey Thompson and Tre Palmer.

ToryTaylor

The Aussie returns to the roster this week after booting 4/5 punts in the Gopher 20. Taylor finished the day averaging 42.4 yards per boat. It’s nowhere near his best performance in a Hawkeye uniform, but considering how cold it was in Minneapolis, his performance deserves kudos. Also factor in that gopher punter Mark Crawford was only 31.7 yards per punt and you’re starting to see these Hawkeyes continue to win the stretch again.

Drew Stevens

I don’t know what Kirk was doing at the end of the ball game, but it didn’t matter. Drew Stevens is a killer. The newcomer has shown tremendous balance all season and his one-leg rocket could earn him a season-ending Groza prize. This is another area of ​​the game where we, as Hawkeye fans, have been spoiled. One only has to look west in Ames to see what a season looks like when your special teams are behind on offense. I’m incredibly excited to watch Stevens over the next few years as he should continue to get stronger. Hopefully the Hawks don’t need him against Nebraska, but if they do, this kid will come through.

camp below

perform defense

I think this is the first time I’ve criticized the defense this year. Other than that, it wasn’t a very good performance on Saturday. Overall, you can’t fault a unit for only giving up 10 points, but man, they got slashed open on the ground. If I was told before the game that Minnesota would grind Iowa with 312 rushing yards and an average of 6.2 yards per carry, I would have thought the Hawks would have been smashed. Mo Ibrahim was a one-man wrecking ball against the Hawks, constantly allowing Hawkeye defensemen to exaggerate their angles only to seemingly limit 5-8 yards the entire game. After a performance last week that made me feel like Iowa proved itself against a good back, I’m starting to think Wisconsin’s line is hot trash. Against good running teams, the Hawkeyes could not stop the opposing running game. It may not burn them this week against Nebraska, but if they win it will have to be buttoned for the Big Ten championship.

I’ll end this stock watch after that last sentence. It’s really remarkable to think about where this Hawkeye team was just a month ago. It will be interesting to see how this squad will be remembered over time. Right now they have two more games to find out.

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