Defensive lapses give optimistic Hawkeye fans a fright
Iowa got the job done on Saturday, and their offense actually looked pretty good in doing so. They had scored 21 points in the first 10 minutes, and kept pounding Miami’s defense until the end of the game. The defense, however, didn’t produce as well as the offense. Special teams did really well, and all-in-all, I’m satisfied.
CJ Beathard led his offense to 404 yards. He completed 13 of 20 passes for 192 yards and had a rushing touchdown. Jerminic Smith and Matt VandeBerg led the receivers, and Akrum Wadley and LeShun Daniels Jr. Most notably, Akrum Wadley ran 12 carries for 121 yards and 2 touchdowns. He looked incredibly explosive on offense. He’s able to pound through gaps and use his speed to outrun defenders. Although he lacks the driving ability that Daniels has, he perhaps the key to Iowa’s run offense this year. The receivers, on the other hand, made a couple of slip-ups, and those perhaps cost a pair of touchdowns. CJ fired the ball with incredible accuracy. Expect those passes to be caught later in the season.
The defense has less to be proud of. Desmond King did a great job keeping his side locked down. I think that they only threw the ball to his side twice, and they completed both of those passes. That isn’t really a bad thing. Passes are going to get completed, and they effectively had to play with one less receiver. Josey Jewell was ejected early on a targeting call during Desmond King’s (called back) huge punt return to the 5 yard line. It certainly didn’t look like an intentional helmet-to-helmet hit, but it was. The run defense suffered since that happened, and Greg Mabin and the safeties didn’t do a very good job defending the secondary.
Punter Ron Coluzzi had great kicks. 3 punts for an average of 42 yards. Placekicker Keith Duncan also looks incredibly promising. Desmond King had 1 punt return which was called back due to the targeting. He had 1 kick return for 48 yards and 1 for 22.
Overall I’m satisfied with how they played. Perfect season? Doubtful. 10+ wins and a division championship? Sure. I’m looking forward to the rest of the season, and especially the game next week. They’re going to work through their kinks, and they’re going to keep on winning. It’s great to be a Hawkeye!