How To Watch, Stream & Listen
Iowa at Rutgers
Where: SHI Stadium in Piscataway, NJ
Kick-off: Saturday, September 24 at 7:00 PM ET
Weather: 51 degrees, clear skies with a 12% chance of rain, 4 mph winds
TV: FS1 with Noah Eagles (play-by-play) and Mark Helfrich (color)
Stream: Fox Sports App
Radio: Radio: RWJBarnabas Health Rutgers Sports Network (WFAN 101.9 FM/660 AM, Fox Sports New Jersey 93.5 FM/1450 AM, SiriusXM 196) with Chris Carlin (play-by-play), Mike Teel and Eric LeGrand (analyst), and Anthony Fucilli (sideline); WRSU 88.7 FM - Dylan Allen & Eddie Kalegi; Audacy app, Scarlet Knights app
Series History: Iowa leads all-time series 2-0; defeated Rutgers 30-0 in 2019
Iowa SB Nation Site: Black Heart Gold Pants
Passing: Evan Simon - 27-for-40, 67.5%, 266 yards, 2 touchdowns, 0 interceptions
Rushing: Al-Shadee Salaam - 137 yards on 21 carries, 6.5 ypc, 2 touchdowns
Receiving: Aron Cruickshank - 11 catches for 101 yards, 9.2 ypc, 1 touchdown
Defense: Christian Izien and Deion Jennings - 18 tackles, Wesley Bailey - 2.5 sacks, Robert Longerbeam - 2 interceptions
Passing: Spencer Petras - 37-for-77, 48.1%, 376 yards, 1 touchdowns, 2 interceptions
Rushing: Kaleb Johnson - 116 yards on 14 carries, 8.3 ypc, 2 touchdown
Receiving: Arland Bruce IV - 9 catches for 127 yards, 14.1 ypc, 1 touchdown
Defense: Jack Campbell - 30 tackles, Lukas Von Ness and Joe Evans - 2 sacks, Cooper DeJean - 2 interceptions
What To Watch For
When Rutgers has the ball
Is Rutgers the better offensive team in this game? There are not many instances where that question can be asked. Nonetheless, it may be true here but the Scarlet Knights will be dealing with an elite defense.
So, the key is to take care of the ball. This is key in every game but more so in this matchup for a couple reasons.
First, the Iowa defense is incredible. In three games, the Hawkeyes have allowed just 13 points. This is second in the nation, behind only Georgia. Iowa also ranked fourth in total defense, sixth in pass defense, and 15th against the run. Maintaining drives will be important for a Rutgers’ offense that mustered up just 201 yards and nine points against Temple. The lone touchdown came on defense.
Second, Iowa’s offense is struggling. The last thing that Rutgers wants to do is give the Hawkeyes the ball in plus territory and spark their offense.
After discussions with those around Iowa, the defensive line can be penetrated. Rutgers will have to use its speed — both in the ground game and potentially in the pass. This means getting a running back lined up on a linebacker to exploit this matchup.
Jack Campbell is one of the best linebackers in the nation and can plug a hole in the middle. The offensive line for Rutgers will have to be physical and gain an advantage.
When Iowa has the ball
Iowa defeated Nevada 27-0 last week. To many, this was considered an “offensive breakout” for the Hawkeyes — and in a way it was.
Iowa did not score a touchdown until Week 2. This came after a 7-3 victory in its first game that featured two safeties and a field goal. Patience might be running low with Spencer Petras but the coaching staff will likely roll with the experience.
Kaleb Johnson broke two big runs against Nevada but out side of that, the Hawkeyes gained just two yards per carry. Defensively, Rutgers has been stout. The Scarlet Knights have given up just 1.1 yards per carry. Even though the competition has not been the best, Rutgers has allowed a total of 97 rushing yards through three games.
Petras has performed well on the road in his career. The Hawkeyes will have to decide how they are going to get something going, whether it is on the ground or have Petras challenge an experience secondary for Rutgers.
Could Rutgers win this game?
Rutgers will enter as a 7.5point underdog on its home field. This is a 7:00 PM kickoff in front of a sold out crowd wearing Scarlet in the crowd. All signs point to a full-throated crowd being loud all night as it tries to rally behind a struggling offense. This is a statement game for Greg Schiano, Rutgers, and the entire program as a whole.
Rutgers has a chance to end a 19-game home losing streak in Big Ten play. It can also go 4-0 for the first time since 2012. The Big Ten is a gauntlet once again but the Scarlet Knights open play against a team that is very similar in many ways. With a late kickoff, Rutgers will be on national TV and fans will have time to prepare. Whether at the game or watching from home, Saturday, Sept. 24 has a chance to be an exciting day for all.