Rapid Reaction: Iowa 18, N. Illinois 17
September, 1, 2012
By Scott Powers | ESPNChicago.com
CHICAGO -- Here’s a quick look at the Iowa Hawkeyes' 18-17 win over the Northern Illinois Huskies at Soldier Field on Saturday.
How it happened: Iowa overcame a 17-9 deficit in the fourth quarter to prevent another Big Ten team from being upset on the day. Hawkeyes running back Damon Bullock scored on a 23-yard run to put Iowa ahead 18-17 with 2:15 remaining in the game. It was his longest run of the day. Bullock also rushed for a game-high 150 yards. Iowa kicker Mike Meyer accounted for the rest of his team’s points. He connected on field goals of 34, 29 and 50 yards. Iowa had struggled in the red zone prior to Bullock’s touchdown. The Hawkeyes had made three previous trips and were held to field goals. Iowa quarterback James Vandenberg was sacked six times. The Huskies found the end zone twice. True freshman Keith Harris Jr. rushed for a 7-yard touchdown in the first quarter on his first career carry, and quarterback Jordan Lynch raced away from Iowa’s defense on a 73-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.
What it means: Iowa has won its last 12 season openers. Northern Illinois’ nine-game winning streak was snapped with the loss. The Huskies had held the nation’s longest FBS winning streak.
Outside the box: Iowa is now 15-2 when rushing for 120 yards or more in the last two seasons.
Up next: Iowa will play four consecutive home games beginning next week with Iowa State. Northern Illinois hosts Tennessee-Martin next week.