Iowa vs. Northwestern Fearless Prediction & Game Preview
Check out the Iowa vs. Northwestern fearless prediction and game preview.
Iowa (4-2) vs. Northwestern (3-3) Game Preview
Broadcast, TV, Game Time
Date: Saturday, October 21st
Game Time: 12:00 pm ET
Venue: Ryan Field, Evanston, IL
Northwestern and Iowa aren’t totally out of the Big Ten West title hunt – or at least a piece of it – but the loser will be toast.
The Wildcats might have saved their season with a 37-21 win over Maryland, but they don’t have the easiest of roads to get three more wins with Michigan State and at Nebraska up next.
The offense finally started to click a bit, overcoming another mediocre day from the defense. That’s fine – this isn’t going to be a special season – but if they can get by Iowa, and with the Illinois layup still to play, all it’ll take is one more win to get a 13th game.
Iowa should be shooting a little big higher than just a bowl game – it should be hoping for one of the better ones.
However, lose this week, and there are big, big problems, with Ohio State still to deal with, along with road games at Wisconsin and Nebraska.
One Reason Why Iowa Will Win
Nathan Stanley is quietly having a solid season.
He couldn’t get anything going against Michigan State, and he’s not accurate enough, but he’s pushing the ball deep at times, came through late against Iowa State – with just a wee bit of help from Akrum Wadley – and has more than done his job, with 15 touchdown passes on the season with two picks.
The Northwestern secondary hasn’t been anything great, allowing close to 200 yards or more – 199 against Nevada and 197 against Wisconsin – in every game, and it hasn’t picked off a pass in three of the last four.
Penn State QB Trace McSorley was solid against it, and Maryland WR D.J. Moore went off last week. Wadley and the Iowa game will try to take over early, but if Stanley is hitting the deep ball, the Wildcats are in trouble.
One Reason Why Northwestern Will Win
Welcome back, Justin Jackson.
The four-year Wildcat star running back lit up Iowa in last year’s Northwestern win, taking off for 171 yards and a score, but this year he’s had his issues getting going. He was fine in the opener against a bad Nevada team, and he took off for 121 yards and three scores against Bowling Green, but he didn’t do much of anything against anyone else.
And then came the Maryland game. The offense kept feeding him the ball, and he came through with 171 yards and two scores – the Wildcat offense desperately needed the performance.
Iowa has the talent on D, but it put Saquon Barkley in the Heisman race, and gave up 200 yards to Illinois last week. The run defense has been just okay – not amazing.
What’s Going To Happen
Oh yeah, Akrum Wadley.
The last time he was in Evanston, he hit the Wildcats for 204 yards and four scores with home run after home run. Last year, he was stuffed for just 35 yards, but scored twice.
The Wildcat run defense has been solid, but it’s about to get run through by Wadley and the Hawkeyes as they take over the tempo of the game early. He’ll set up several third-and-short situations, and the offense will keep the chains moving. Northwestern won’t convert on enough of its chances.
Iowa vs. Northwestern Prediction
Iowa 30, Northwestern 21
Iowa -1, o/u: 47
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