Iowa Preview: Safety First

Who Shot Who In The What Now?  Penn State (9-0, 5-0) at Iowa (5-4, 2-3).  Kickoff at 3:30 Eastern, Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, Iowa.

Kicking Television:  The venerable Brad Nessler, Bob Griese, and Paul Maguire bring you the action on ABC.  The lovely and talented Stacey Dales works the sidelines.  Radio affiliates here.  Coverage map forthcoming.  I believe that those of you who don't get the game on ABC will get it on ESPN. 

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A Fool And His Money:  Penn State is favored by 7.5 points on the road.  The over/under sits at 43.  Useless gambling trends, for your perusal.

Legendary (And Dubious) Statistical Achievements:  Penn State leads the Big Ten in the least amount of turnovers committed, and for all of our complaints about passing efficiency numbers under Jay Paterno, PSU is #1 in the conference there as well.  Iowa is dead last in both the number of tackles for loss and sacks. 

Weather:  Well, it's interesting.  Possible snow showers and breezy (15-20 mph).  It may affect the passing game on a day where Penn State should have a huge advantage in that area.

Lest We Forget:  The safety dance, from 2004.  I've never been so happy to miss a Penn State game because of a wedding.  Throughout the afternoon we kept receiving updates from fellow PSU fans.  3-2?  6-2?  6-4?!?  Was Boris Becker somehow involved?

Iowa vs. Penn State 2004 (via HawkeyeFan123)


Pickin' On The Big Ten:  I agree with Iowa supporter Mark Hasty's analysis -- this is going to be a close game.  Iowa is essentially a slightly less-athletic version of Penn State, and the only area in which Iowa is significantly worse is their offensive passing attack.  Kirk Ferentz, for whatever reason, usually has a very good plan for Penn State.  The notable exception, of course, is last year's game in which Iowa stayed in the game due to PSU turnovers.

Smoke Signals From Enemy Territory:  Black Heart Gold Pants has been unusually silent this week, but don't worry, we'll have a Q&A with them posted very soon.  And yes, MR. PATERNO THANK YOU will be making an appearance.

Let's Pretend You're Jay Paterno.  No, seriously:  Here's what I do.  Come out throwing, assuming weather conditions are decent.  That's Iowa's defensive weakness -- they don't defend the pass very well and don't get after the quarterback.  Attack that weakness, and use that strategy to open up the running game.  Get two touchdowns on the board and force Iowa into siphoning a few carries away from Shonn Greene, allowing Tom Bradley's defense to go after Ricky Stanzi, who was sacked six times last week and committed a few turnovers.   

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