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Dave Campbell / AP Sports Writer, Published September 28 2013

Iowa breezes by Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS – For the second straight season, Iowa ran all over Minnesota’s perfect nonconference record.

Welcome to the Big Ten, Gophers. This year wasn’t any less frustrating, either.

Jake Rudock threw for one touchdown and ran for another and the Hawkeyes dominated the Gophers on both sides of the ball in a

23-7 victory on Saturday.

“It hurts. It’s supposed to hurt. But we can’t let it affect this next week,” said safety Brock Vereen, whose interception in the end zone early in the fourth quarter gave the Gophers a fighting chance, trailing by 13 at that point. “If we expect to go into Michigan and get a win there, it going to take a refocus.”

Mark Weisman rushed for 147 yards on 24 carries and Mike Meyer made three of his four field-goal attempts to help the Hawkeyes (4-1,

1-0) start the Big Ten with a bang. After losing their opener to Northern Illinois, they’ve outscored their last two opponents 82-10. Iowa converted 8 of 14 third downs in this one.

Senior linebackers Christian Kirksey, James Morris and Anthony Hitchens led a stifling effort on defense, including interceptions by Kirksey and Morris of Minnesota quarterback Philip Nelson. Nelson hadn’t played in two weeks because of an injury, but he started ahead of Mitch Leidner for the Gophers (4-1,

0-1).

“We felt comfortable that if could play, he would. It was going to be his call,” coach Jerry Kill said. “We talked to him last night, and we talked to him before the game. He felt that he was 100 percent, that he’d be able to go.”

Nelson lost 18 yards on nine rushes and completed 12 of 24 passes for 135 yards and one touchdown to Derrick Engel, who had 67 yards on five catches.

“Anytime you lose, especially on homecoming against Iowa, it hurts,” Engel said.

Iowa outgained Minnesota 464-165 in total yards to keep the Floyd of Rosedale trophy for another year. The Hawkeyes have won 10 of the last 13 meetings, including last season when that

4-0 nonconference mark for Minnesota was buried beneath a bunch of powerful runs by Weisman in a

31-13 loss.

The Gophers were far more convincing with their first four victories this year, with an average of 41.8 points and 282.2 yards rushing per game, but this defeat was equally humbling and decisive.

Iowa 3 14 3 3 – 23

Minnesota 0 0 7 0 – 7

First Quarter

Iowa – FG Meyer 49, 6:09.

Second Quarter

Iowa – Rudock 4 run (Meyer kick), 8:04.

Iowa – Powell 74 pass from Rudock (Meyer kick), 2:56.

Third Quarter

Iowa – FG Meyer 23, 5:10.

Minn – Engel 23 pass from Nelson (Hawthorne kick), 3:06.

Fourth Quarter

Iowa – FG Meyer 46, 4:48.

A – 51,382.

Iowa Minn

First downs 22 11

Rushes-yards 45-246 27-30

Passing 218 135

Comp-Att-Int 15-25-1 12-24-2

Return Yards 15 0

Punts-Avg. 2-29.5 7-46.6

Fumbles-Lost 1-0 0-0

Penalties-Yards 1-10 5-45

Time of Possession 36:01 23:59

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING: Iowa, Weisman 24-147, Bullock 11-47, Rudock 5-35,

Canzeri 3-13, Cox 1-5, Team 1-(minus 1). Minnesota, R.Williams 7-22,

Cobb 8-20, Kirkwood 3-6, Nelson 9-(minus 18).

PASSING: Iowa, Rudock 15-25-1-218. Minnesota, Nelson 12-24-2-135.

RECEIVING: Iowa, Martin-Manley 6-56, Bullock 3-7, Powell 1-74,

Cox 1-35, Hillyer 1-14, Fiedorowicz 1-13, T.Smith 1-11, Hamilton 1-8.

Minnesota, Engel 5-67, Cobb 3-16, Fruechte 2-29, Wolitarsky 1-15,

Kirkwood 1-8.