Iowa Pk @ Arizona


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Iowa travels to Tuscon for a 9:30 local time start in the best matchup of the cfb week imo. Line opened Iowa -1 went to -2, and then Dr. Bob dropped a best bet spot on AZ and the line has fallen back to a pick.

Iowa 2-0, has come out of the gate strong in both games this yr. Scoring on both their 1st and 2nd drives of each game, in easy wins. Iowa had a 28-0 lead over ISU last weekend, @ half and a 4/1 edge in yds, t.o.p. and then cruised to 35-7 victory. Iowa is averaging 457 yds offense 227 rushing and 230 passing. Stanzi is hitting 70% passing w/ 3 td’s and 0 int’s. The defense has been stout giving up 230 yd/game.

AZ 2-0 has been impressive in wins @ Toledo and v Citadel, giving up only 8 pts in 2 games. QB Foles is lighting up the air hitting 83% of his passes w/ 3 td’s and 2 int’s. Grigsby has been solid on the ground as well.

Last season Iowa won 27-17 in Iowa City. Stanzi was a bit off that day, including a pick 6 td in the 1st qtr, a fumble and another int. Iowa held AZ to a fg after Grigsby ran a ball down to the 1, and then AZ scored inside the last 2 mins of the game. Iowa was able to control the ball on the ground, and won the game fairly comfortably.

The key to this game IMO is can the Iowa defense slow down AZ when they go 3 and 4 wide. Iowa typically will play zone putting OLB on the slot guys, and 2 deep safeties, which can cause issues IF a team is trying to go deep a lot. However the DL should be able to put some pressure on Foles, and perhaps cause him some mistakes. On the other side of the ball, can the Iowa OL control the LOS and allow Robinson and Hampton to grind out the game. Foles on the sideline as Iowa goes for 5 minute drives, will drive Stoops crazy. It should be noted that Stoops does lack some patience, as he pulled Foles v Toledo for a series, as he started a little slow. Many are pointing to the 2004 game where Iowa came to ASU and got clocked 44-7. That game was also played on Sept. 18, Norm Parker Iowa Def Coor also couldn’t travel to that game due to health reasons, and he won’t make this trip. Parker is having issues w/ his diabetes, but the team is becoming accustomed to his abscense from the sideline. 1 thing to not discount is Iowa’s punter Donahue is a terrific weapon in a field position battle, he’s averaging over 44/punt w/ little to no return yards.

So what will happen, Iowa will take the ball to start the game, go down the field and get points, AZ will do the same, and then we will be in a field position battle. I think Foles makes a big mistake, Iowa takes advantage and wins the game 23-16. Iowa’s advantages in the trenches being the difference in the game, eventaully wearing down Arizona.




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I am going the other way on this one, but it really is not a homer pick [I don't believe yours is either] considering I am an ASU fan and don't really like Stoops or Az for that matter. But I do think they are one of the most underrated teams in the West and the only ? I had was their linebackers. I can't say they proved themselves against Citadel or Toledo but I was impressed, especially considering the the distinctly different offenses those 2 run. I believe you are right about big advantages in the O line and probably D line to Iowa, but I have a feeling Az rushing game will be productive too with 3 different types of backs, slasher in Gigsby, speed in Antolin, and power in Nwoko. The field position battle may actually be equal as Az also has a very good punter in Criner. I think the difference in this game will be Az speed actually wearing down the Hawkeyes as opposed to Iowa's size wearing down Az. I think the revenge angle also plays a part. I like Az, don't love them, as I do think the Big 10 is the stronger conf this year. Between the dry desert heat [different than the Iowa humidity] and the home field I also believe Az has 2 lesser quantitative advantages. Either way it should be an intense game, and like you said, the best of the day! GL cr8jr.



Always love reading your Iowa takes. Do you put any stock into the AZ D-line having two potential All-Pac 10 team DEs? Does that concern you with what we know about Iowa having three new guys on the O-line this year? Seems like the O-line might be tested more with this being their first true road test.
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