Inside The Iowa Game

    Go Hoosiers! Kellen Lewis has led the Hoosiers to back-to-back victories over Iowa.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Kellen Lewis has led the Hoosiers to back-to-back victories over Iowa.
    Go Hoosiers!

    Oct. 10, 2008

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - As the Indiana football team prepares for Saturday's game against Iowa, takes a look inside the numbers. The Hoosiers (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten) and Hawkeyes (3-3, 0-2) will kick off at noon EDT Saturday at Memorial Stadium and the game will be televised by the Big Ten Network.

    Wayne Larrivee will handle play-by-play duties and he will be joined by analyst Chris Martin and sideline reporter Anthony Herron. The game can also be heard on the statewide IU Radio Network with Don Fischer (play-by-play), Pete Compise (analyst) and Joe Smith (pre-game, halftime and post-game) on the call.

    The Iowa Series
    Indiana has won five of the last eight meetings between the two teams, including victories in each of the last two seasons. Iowa leads the all-time series, 38-27-4. The last time the Hoosiers won three straight games in the series came from 1998-00.

    IU posted a 38-20 victory in Iowa City last year on the heels of a 31-28 victory over the No. 13 Hawkeyes on Oct. 14, 2006. After its triumph in 2006, the Hoosiers were selected as the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week. IU scored 24 of the game's final 31 points to come away with its first win over a top-15 team since Oct. 10, 1987, against No. 9 Ohio State.

    Last Year Vs. Iowa
    The Hoosiers racked up nearly 400 yards of offense on their way to a 38-20 win against Iowa and their first Big Ten win of the season at Kinnick Stadium. Indiana quarterback Kellen Lewis accounted for three touchdowns and threw for over 300 yards, while Josiah Sears ran for two more scores to pace the IU offense.

    Indiana won for the fifth time in the last eight meetings against the Hawkeyes, and the win gave IU its first triumph in Iowa City since a 38-31 victory on Oct. 23, 1999. The Hoosiers earned their largest margin of victory on the road over a conference foe since a 63-32 win at Wisconsin on Oct. 6, 2001, and the largest margin of victory for an Indiana team at Kinnick Stadium since a 52-20 win on Oct. 20, 1945.



    Lewis ended up with 323 yards passing and three touchdowns in the game and also recorded 71 receiving yards and a score after picking up a Sears fumble and racing it down the sideline for six points. James Hardy had four catches for 114 yards and a touchdown. Sears only had five carries for 13 yards but found the end zone on two of those carries.

    The IU defense was equally as impressive, tying a school record with nine sacks, the most since Oct. 10, 1992, at Northwestern when they also had nine sacks. Jammie Kirlew had a career-high 3.5 sacks and Greg Middleton added 2.5 sacks.

    Lewis picked up his second Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honor of 2007 following the game and the fourth of his career.

    Lewis Vs. The Hawks
    In his two career games against Iowa, Kellen Lewis has enjoyed a considerable amount of success in leading the Hoosiers to a pair of victories. The junior quarterback has completed 38-of-51 (74.5 percent) for 577 yards (288.5 average) and scored seven (six passing, one rushing) of the team's nine total touchdowns. He has been named the Big Ten's Offensive Player of the Week following both Indiana wins.

    Lewis completed 19-of-26 (73.1) for 322 yards, three touchdown passes (one credited to himself), 71 receiving yards, and 20 rushing yards last season. In 2006, he connected on 19-of-25 (76.0) for 255 yards, three scores, 13 rushing yards and one rushing TD.

    No Cupcakes
    The three teams Indiana has lost to this season are a combined 16-2. Ball State stands at 6-0, while Michigan State and Minnesota enter this weekend with 5-1 records. The Spartans are ranked 23rd in the Associated Press Poll and sit 19th in the USA Today Coaches' Poll. Ball State is No. 25 in the AP Top 25 and sit just outside the top 25 with 75 votes from the coaches.

    All-Purpose Back
    Senior captain Marcus Thigpen recorded his second 100-yard game of the season and the fourth of his career with 113 yards on nine carries and two touchdowns vs. Michigan State. Thigpen also added two receptions for 94 yards and a score along with 60 kick return yards.

    The track standout who has been dubbed "The Fastest Man in Bloomington" raced a career-long 78 yards to paydirt and took a Kellen Lewis pass 79 yards to the house to become the first Hoosier to ever record a rushing and a receiving TD over 75 yards in the same game.

    Thigpen became the first Hoosier to score on the ground and through the air since Demetrius McCray at Minnesota in 2006 and his run was the longest since Levron Williams scored on an 80-yarder in 2001. It marked the third time in his career he has scored twice on the ground and the first time in his career he crossed the goal line on three separate occasions.

    The Detroit native is one of only two players (Kory Sheets, Purdue) to sit in the Big Ten's top five in all-purpose yards (3rd, 12th nationally; 168.8), kick returns (4th, 20.9) and scoring (T-4th, 7.2). Thigpen closed the MSU game with 267 all-purpose yards, the 10th-highest total in IU history. He also holds the fourth-best mark with 311 yards at Illinois (Oct. 7, 2006).

    Using His Speed
    With his 77-yard touchdown reception at Minnesota, fifth-year senior running back Marcus Thigpen now has three 75-plus yard scores in the last two weeks. Adding in his three career kickoff TD returns and a 74-yard touchdown grab his freshman year, Thigpen has seven career scores on plays over 70 yards.

    Earlier this season against Murray State Thigpen scampered 67 yards in the first quarter and added a 31-yarder later in the same stanza en route to his third career 100-yard game. With 100 yards on just seven carries, Thigpen set a new school record for the fewest number of rushes to top 100 yards.

    Thigpen finished the game with five plays over 20 yards, including two on the ground, two on kickoffs and one reception. He added four against Michigan State and two at Minnesota to push his team-leading total to 14, five of which have resulted in six points. Thigpen has eight 20-plus yard kick returns, three rushes over 20 yards and three receptions for 20-plus yards.


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