Hawkeye Hope for a Bowl Hanging by a Thread

The Hawkeyes’ record currently stands at 4-5 with three games left in the regular season. Iowa’s recent loss to Indiana has made the team’s record a losing one. To have a hope of getting into a bowl game, the Hawkeyes will have to win at least two of their remaining three games to end with a winning record. Next week, the Hawkeyes will take on Purdue, who sports a 3-6 record.

Looking back at Iowa’s season this year, there have been many ups and downs with plenty of bumps along the way. The Hawkeyes started the season off with a win against Northern Illinois at Soldier Field in Chicago. That victory was a very close one at 18-17, with Iowa scoring its only touchdown in the final minutes of the game.

The next week, the Hawkeyes took on the Iowa State Cyclones at Kinnick Stadium. The overall game was disappointing, with the final score being 9-6 in favor of the Cyclones. This win for the Cyclones resulted in their first victory in Iowa City in 10 years. With Iowa only capitalizing on field goals and not being able to score any touchdowns, the upcoming season looked ominous.

On September 15th, the Hawkeyes beat UNI 27-16 at home. This is where the beloved Iowa running back Mark Weisman made his first appearance at halfback. Rushing for three short touchdowns, Weisman helped the Hawkeyes to their victory over UNI and began to make a name for himself.

The following week Iowa faced Central Michigan. In a shocking turn of events, Iowa wound up falling to Central Michigan 32-31. Weisman scored a 12-yard touchdown with 2 minutes remaining, which put the Hawks up 31-23. Hawkeye players and fans alike thought that would win them the game, until Central Michigan rallied in the final moments of the game. Central Michigan scored 9 points in the last 45 seconds, including a 47-yard field goal in the final three seconds.

In Iowa’s first B1G match-up of the season, the Hawkeyes were able to defeat Minnesota, 31-13. Weisman ran for 177 yards, contributing to the big win for the Hawkeyes. This game also marked Kirk Ferentz’s 200th win at the helm of the Hawkeyes.

October 13th marked Iowa’s victory over Michigan State. The game was a heart-stopper, going into double overtime. No one other than Mark Weisman scored the tying touchdown in the last minute of regulation to send the Hawks into overtime. This 19-16 victory started giving fans the confidence they needed to cheer on Iowa.

After the Michigan State nail-biter, the Hawkeyes faced Penn State at home. This game was nothing but misery for the Hawkeyes. At halftime Penn State led 24-0. Just 27 seconds into the second half, Penn State scored again making it 31-0. Iowa was able to score two late touchdowns, making the final score 38-14.
Next Iowa faced Northwestern on October 27th. This was another game Iowa fans would like to forget. Iowa did not execute on many of their offensive chances and were plagued by penalties. Late in the second quarter Mark Weisman left the game with an injury and Damon Bullock stepped in. It was an overall disappointing performance for the Hawkeyes and ended in a loss to the Wildcats, 28-17.

This past Saturday was Iowa’s game against Indiana. Proving to be a constant struggle for the Hawkeyes, penalties cost the Hawks some good opportunities. Forced to play without Weisman, Bullock once again took his place. Bullock was able to score a touchdown giving the Hawks a 21-17 lead, but then Indiana came back to score a touchdown winning the game 24-21.

Heading into their final three games of the season, fans can only hope the Hawkeyes step up their game. If they play smart, and strategize effectively against their opponents, they might just have a chance, and the return of Weisman probably wouldn’t hurt either. Even though the Hawkeyes are often the cause of many panic-attacks, anxiety disorders, and heart attacks amongst fans- we’d appreciate having them during a bowl game too.

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