The Minnesota Gophers fall to 0-2 in Big Ten play after falling to the Iowa Hawkeyes 48-31 on a beautiful October 6 evening in Minneapolis.
The Hawkeyes pressured Minnesota’s freshman quarterback, Zack Annexstad, all day, sacking him five times and forced four interceptions. The Maroon & Gold defense only got the Iowa quarterback, Nate Stanley once and Stanley had one interception.
Minnesota greatly missed their defensive leader, Antoine Winfield Jr., who was lost in the Maryland game for the rest of the season. The veteran’s absence on the field was apparent as the Hawkeye offense racked up four passing touchdowns and another two on the ground, averaging just under 14 yards per completed pass.
Minnesota Head Coach, P.J. Fleck came out and congratulated a “mature” Iowa State team. He said he was disappointed in the team with “spotted growth” (a farming reference) to growth in certain rows more than others. He said they need to grow as a team, but he stressed that they kept growing. They have seven seniors, 14 juniors (and missing some of their best offensive and defensive players) he referenced the huge strides his freshman and sophomore players made.
Fleck’s press conference is worth a watch – you can view it here.
Next week Minnesota travels to Ohio State with a road game at Nebraska to follow after that. It will be a couple of very difficult games before they come back home for a game against Indiana on Oct. 26. Stay tuned for more coverage, The Minnesota Sports Report is trying to make it down again to Lincoln for their game against the Cornhuskers in two weeks.