Iowa football to face USC in Holiday Bowl

The Hawkeyes will travel to San Diego on Dec. 27 in an attempt to pick up their third-consecutive bowl win.


Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa players walk out of the tunnel before a football game between Iowa and Middle Tennessee State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, September 28, 2019. The Hawkeyes defeated the Blue Raiders, 48-3. (Shivansh Ahuja/The Daily Iowan)

Pete Ruden, Pregame Editor

After a 9-3 regular season, Iowa finally knows where it will go to try to accomplish a 10-win season: the Holiday Bowl.

The Hawkeyes will take on USC in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego on Dec. 27. The game will serve as a rematch of the 2003 Orange Bowl that saw the Trojans take down Iowa, 38-17.

“The Hawkeyes are excited to be invited to San Diego to participate in the Holiday Bowl,” Iowa Athletics Director Gary Barta said in a release. “The host committee ‘red coats’ and the city of San Diego have a great reputation as incredible hosts and for putting on a first-class event.

“I’m proud of our student-athletes and coaches for the season they’ve had so far. We look forward [to] joining our West Coast alumni, friends and fans as well as the thousands of Hawkeyes who will travel to join us in what we know will be an outstanding visit to Southern California.”

After losing five bowl games in a row, Iowa finds itself on a two-game bowl winning streak, toppling Boston College in the Pinstripe Bowl in 2017 and beating Mississippi State in the Outback Bowl on Jan. 1.

USC finished 2019 with an 8-4 record, including a 7-2 mark in Pac-12 play. The Trojans’ four losses have come against BYU, Washington, Notre Dame, and Oregon — teams with a combined 35-14 record.

USC is led by quarterback Kedon Slovis, who has thrown for 3,242 yards, 28 touchdowns, and nine interceptions on 71.8 percent passing.

One of Slovis’ top targets, wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr., has been one of the best wideouts in the country this season. Pittman hauled in 95 passes for 1,222 yards for 11 scores during the 2019 season.

In his past three games, Pittman has caught 37 passes for 430 yards and three touchdowns.

Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz will take the podium at 4:30 p.m. to speak about the upcoming bowl. Follow @dipregame on Twitter for live updates.

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