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Iowa vs. Nebraska (What to expect)

Posted on 22. Nov, 2012 by in Iowa Football

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By Brendan Stiles

HawkeyeDrive.com

To get you all ready for Friday’s game between Iowa and No. 17 Nebraska, I put together a list of things you ought to know before these two face off at Kinnick Stadium.

At the end, I’ll provide what I think are three keys to an Iowa victory.

Iowa Hawkeyes (4-7, 2-5) vs. No. 17 Nebraska Cornhuskers (9-2, 6-1)

Kinnick Stadium; Iowa City, Iowa

Nov. 23, 2012

11 a.m. Central

TV: ABC (Mike Patrick, Ed Cunningham, Jeannine Edwards)

Radio: Hawkeye Radio Network (Gary Dolphin, Ed Podolak, Rob Brooks)

Weather: 33 degrees; breezy weather; winds from NW around 23 MPH

Brendan’s Three Keys to the Game:

1. Dictate time of possession

After the horrendous display from Iowa’s defense last weekend in Ann Arbor and given the offensive playmakers Nebraska features this week, time of possession will be important for the Hawkeyes if their going to have any chance. The offense has to get something going, whether it’s Mark Weisman on the ground or the tight ends being heavily involved like they were against Michigan. Iowa has to be able to pick up first downs and keep Nebraska’s offense on the sidelines Friday.

2. Force turnovers

Whenever the defense is out on the field, it has to be able to force Nebraska turnovers. Remarkably, Iowa still has the best turnover margin of any team in the Big Ten. While Taylor Martinez has made enormous strides as the Cornhuskers’ signal-caller, his passing mechanics still haven’t significantly improved. The Hawkeyes are going to need to force a turnover or two early on, not only to keep themselves in the game, but to maybe get to Martinez’s head a little as well.

3. Use wrinkles to keep Huskers guessing

Iowa’s season ends Friday. There’s no bowl game. It’s a rivalry game with a trophy at stake, but in the grand scheme of things, the Hawkeyes have nothing to lose while a lot is on the line for Nebraska. Regardless of whether Iowa sticks to its main core of starters for four quarters or mixes it up personnel-wise to get younger and more inexperienced players some game action, it might as well throw its entire arsenal at the Cornhuskers on both sides of the ball. That means call plays offensively that haven’t been used this season and defensively throwing in some exotic blitzes and go nickel or dime more frequently. Anything that could catch Nebraska off guard could prove to be of benefit for Iowa, because sticking to the same script is only going to result in an easy Cornhusker win.

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