Another loss to a ranked opponent cost Iowa dearly last weekend. Suffering a 24-22 defeat at the hands of No. 13 Wisconsin last Saturday, the Hawkeyes’ hopes of potentially winning the West took a major hit.
Iowa is now 6-3 on the season and 3-3 in B1G play with three games left. While there isn’t a division title to compete for at this point, two of the Hawkeyes’ remaining three games are rivalry contests, meaning there’s plenty at stake.
This week, Iowa hosts No. 17 Minnesota, which will likely get a big boost in the College Football Playoff rankings later Tuesday evening after a win over No. 4 Penn State. Entering the game, Iowa is mindful of the potential to pull off a big upset.
“We’re playing at Kinnick. Anytime you get to play at Kinnick against a top-10 team you’re going to get good vibes,” defensive back Geno Stone said, according to IowaFBLive on Twitter. “It’s going to be a great atmosphere and you have to embrace it.”
Quarterback Nate Stanley says the key to hanging with Minnesota this weekend is to match their energy level on the field.
“They’ve done a great job this year. They’re playing with a lot of confidence,” Stanley said. “It’s our job that we’re ready to play. We need to be at the level that can maximize our play. We can’t overhype ourselves. It’s on ourselves to make sure we’re at the right level.”
One of the best rivalry trophies in college football is on the line, with Iowa and Minnesota battling for Floyd of Rosedale. While the Gophers lead the all-time series 62-48-2 and the trophy series 42-40-2, the Hawkeyes have won the last four meetings (2015-2019).
Defensive lineman Cedrick Lattimore doesn’t want Floyd to leave Iowa City.
“We don’t want them to leave with The Pig,” Lattimore said. “We have to continue to fight every play until the clock is at zero.”
Minnesota and Iowa are scheduled to kick things off on Saturday at 4 p.m. ET on FOX.