Iowa’s bowl chances are fleeting after suffering its third straight loss. It’s the first time since 2007 that the Hawkeyes have lost three straight Big Ten games and it’s the same season, coincidentally, that the Hawkeyes skipped the postseason.
Iowa is 4-5 and must win at least two games to become bowl eligible. Next week, Iowa hosts Purdue, but then must play upset either Michigan or Nebraska to earn its 11th bowl game in the last 12 seasons.
“We’re not looking at the big picture,” Iowa quarterback James Vandenberg said. “We’ve got three games left, possibly four left in my and the seniors’ Iowa football career. We’re going to take every one like it’s our last and let the chips fall where they may.”
D+ — The season needs a defibrillator. Or maybe a do-over. One of those.
- Marc Morehouse
D — Indiana is in basketball mode, and apparently so is Iowa.
- Scott Dochterman
By The Numbers
Indiana used a quarterback combination of Cam Coffman and Nate Sudfeld to batter Iowa for 406 passing yards. Indiana’s game-winning touchdown pass came with 10:58 left in the game when Coffman hit Cody Latimer on a 30-yard strike.
“We saw that their safeties were low,” Coffman said. “We thought we could take a shot and Cody had been making plays for us like he always does. Safety was low, so we just threw it over the top, and Cody made a good catch.”
Coffman started the game but was benched on Indiana’s second offensive series for Sudfeld, who played the rest of the first half. Coffman then played the entire second half. Coffman threw for 315 yards and three touchdowns.
INT part deux
Iowa linebacker Christian Kirksey scored his second career touchdown this year on a 18-yard interception return. His pick-6 gave Iowa a 14-0 first-quarter lead.
Kirksey also recovered a fumble in the fourth quarter against Indiana. Against Minnesota, Kirksey returned an interception 68 yards for a score.
Back with Bullock
Iowa running back Damon Bullock earned his first start since week three against Northern Iowa. He rushed for 83 yards and scored on a 4-yard touchdown run. He finished with 100 all-purpose yards.
Running back Mark Weisman reaggravated a leg injury last week at Northwestern and did not make the trip to Indiana.
Law and order
Iowa sophomore Niko Law made his first career start at strong safety Saturday. Law finished with eight tackles and had two pass breakups.
“I’m a very passionate and emotional guy on the field,” Law said. “I’m always hyped and ready to go.
“I performed good.”
James Vandenberg’s 24-yard, first-quarter touchdown pass to Kevonte Martin-Manley gave the Hawkeyes their first lead in regulation since September. Iowa never led at Michigan State until overtime, and the Hawkeyes were behind from start-to-finish against Penn State and Northwestern.
The last lead Iowa previously held in regulation was against Minnesota on Sept. 29 in a 31-13 victory.
Martin-Manley finished with a career-high 131 receiving yards on seven catches. His previous best was 101 yards against Northern Iowa.
Lightning in the Bloomington area twice delayed the start of Saturday’s game. It originally was slated to begin at 2:42 p.m. Central. It was moved back to 3:12 p.m., then to 3:42 p.m.
It was Iowa’s first weather delay since the 2011 opener against Tennessee Tech, when a downpour delayed the game in the third quarter.
Iowa and Indiana will take at least a four-year hiatus in their football series beginning next season. The schools are in opposite divisions — Iowa in Legends, Indiana in Leaders — and are not scheduled to compete through the next pair of two-year cycles.
Iowa will play Wisconsin and Ohio State in 2013-14 and then Illinois and Penn State in 2015-16. The 2017 schedules have not been released.
Iowa and Indiana had played one another 20 of the last 22 years, with the only hiatus in 2003-04. The four-year break is the series’ longest since a 10-year absence from 1921-31. Iowa leads the all-time series 42-28-4.
The Hawkeyes play host to protected non-divisional opponent Purdue at 11 a.m. Saturday at Kinnick Stadium (BTN). Purdue is Iowa’s third-most played opponent, and the Boilermakers lead the all-time series 45-34-3.