This is Iowa football. Painfully so.
The Hawkeyes opened their season with a 7-3 victory at Kinnick Stadium over South Dakota State on Saturday. How did they get the seven, you ask? The hard way.
Iowa’s points came via a field goal and two safeties. The Hawkeyes finished the game with 168 yards of offense, 10 first downs, two turnovers and 10 punts, two of which set up safeties.
The Jackrabbits had 11 punts of their own. So yes, the under hit.
It was a brutal game for offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz, who was the subject of “Fire Brian” chants from the student section in his first game following a $40,000 raise.
Iowa gained just 59 rushing yards, averaging 1.7 per rush, though that number does include sack yardage. Quarterback Spencer Petras was 11-for-25, throwing for 109 yards and an interception against the FCS outfit.
The Hawkeyes won the Big Ten West last year with a 10-2 regular season record, losing the conference title game to Michigan and the Citrus Bowl to Kentucky. Their lack of offense was their downfall, though, as they scored just seven points in each of their two regular season losses and only three against the Wolverines.
No one really expected that to change. This is, after all, Iowa.
After one game, that expectation has been met.