Greetings from the Hawkeye State

November, 7, 2008
11/07/08
7:00
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- So, I couldn't get a hotel room in Iowa City, but this is pretty close. I drove through some freezing rain to get here, and I'm sure there will be flurries at some point this weekend. Good stuff. 

I appreciate all your restaurant recommendations. Though I might wuss out and stay here tonight, I'll be sure to grab breakfast in Iowa City tomorrow. 

Here's the current weather forecast for the four outdoor games featuring Big Ten teams. 

Iowa City, Iowa -- High 39, Low 34, snow showers/wind 

East Lansing, Mich. -- High 41, Low 36, showers

Evanston, Ill. -- High 40, Low 33, rain/snow showers/wind

Bloomington, Ind. -- High 48, Low 34, mostly cloudy

Finally, here are some Penn State-Iowa notes and nuggets from the fine people at ESPN's Stats and Information department. 

  • Penn State is off to its 10th 9-0 start under Joe Paterno. That's more 9-0 starts than any coach in major college football history. A win this week would give Paterno his 9th 10-0 start in his career.
  • Iowa's 5 wins this season have been by a combined 155 points (31.0 per game). Its 4 losses have been by a combined 12 points (3.0 per game).
  • The Nittany Lions have had five perfect seasons under Joe Paterno, but only one of those seasons produced a national championship. With Texas Tech leaping over Penn State in the BCS Standings this week, is Paterno's squad in for another disappointment? (see below)
  • Penn State is 4-0 on the road this season, outscoring opponents 136-32.
INJURIES

Penn State -- QB Daryll Clark (concussion) is probable; DT Devon Still (ankle) is out.

Iowa -- G Andy Kuempel (muscle pull) is doubtful; OL Wes Aeschliman (hip) is out; S Harold Dalton (suspension) is out; TE Tony Moeaki (concussion) is questionable; OL Seth Olsen (ankle) is questionable.

BCS CONTENDERS: WEEK 11

With 3 games remaining, the Nittany Lions find themselves 3rd in the BCS Standings. Here's what it looks like for the top 5 teams.

Current BCS Standings

Remaining Schedule

1. Alabama -- at LSU, vs. Miss St., vs Auburn., possible SEC Title game

2. Texas Tech -- vs. Oklahoma State., at Okla., vs. Baylor, possible Big 12 Title game

3. Penn State -- at Iowa, vs, Indiana, vs. Mich State.

4. Texas -- vs. Baylor, at Kansas, vs. Texas A&M, possible Big 12 Title game

5. Florida -- at Vanderbilt, vs. South Carolina, vs. Citadel, at Florida State, possible SEC Title game

FINAL NUGGETS

  • The Nittany Lions are coming off their bye week. They've been fairly successful after bye weeks in recent years, going 13-4 since 1994.
  • However, the last two times Penn State has faced Iowa following a bye week, the Lions have lost (2003 & 2004).
  • The Nittany Lions defense has held opponents to 10 points or fewer in 5 of 9 games this season and allowed only one opponent to score 20+ points (Illinois scored 24).
  • Penn State has allowed only 3.75 yards per play this season, among the best in the nation.
  • Iowa is looking for its first win over a top 10 opponent since a 30-7 win over No. 9 Wisconsin in 2004.
  • This marks the 8th time that Iowa has faced an unbeaten Penn State team in this series. The Nittany Lions won 6 of the previous 7 such meetings, but Iowa won the last such meeting in 2002 (PSU was 3-0).

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