No. 18 Iowa football team blows out No. 17 Indiana in season-opener

The Hawkeyes defeated the Hoosiers 34-6 at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday.


Jerod Ringwald

Iowa running back Tyler Goodson cuts to the outside of the field during a football game between No. 18 Iowa and No. 17 Indiana at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021. (Jerod Ringwald/The Daily Iowan)

Robert Read, Pregame Editor

The No. 18 Iowa football team scored a touchdown 85 seconds into its season-opener against No. 17 Indiana and held that lead for the rest of the game in a 34-6 victory over the Hoosiers at Kinnick Stadium.

Iowa running back Tyler Goodson’s 56-yard run on the fourth offensive play of the game had the Hawkeyes up 7-0 early. Only 50 seconds of game time later, Hawkeye cornerback Riley Moss caught a deflected pass by Indiana quarterback Michael Penix Jr. and returned it 30 yards for a touchdown. Moss recorded a second pick six later in the second quarter.

Add in a Spencer Petras quarterback draw for a touchdown and a Caleb Shudak 41-yard field goal (the first made attempt of his career) and the Hawkeyes led 31-3 at halftime. By then, the game was all but over.

Iowa held Penix, who was making his first start since tearing his ACL last November, to 14-of-29 passing for 128 yards and intercepted him three times. Penix was replaced with backup quarterback Jack Tuttle in the fourth quarter. The Hawkeyes held the Hoosiers, one of the top offenses in the Big Ten last season, to 233 yards, forced three turnovers, and recorded four tackles for loss.

Goodson led Iowa’s offense, rushing for 99 yards and a touchdown on 19 rushing attempts. Petras was 13-of-27 for 145 yards through the air. His favorite target on the day was Sam LaPorta. The junior tight end caught five passes for 83 yards on Saturday.

Big picture

Iowa is 1-0 to start the 2021 season, winning its first of two games against ranked opponents at the start of the schedule. The season-opener went about as well as Iowa could have hoped. Iowa led for all but 85 seconds of game time. The Hawkeyes also have an early advantage over Big Ten West challenger Wisconsin, who lost to Big Ten foe Penn State 16-10 on Saturday.

Riley Moss’ career game

Moss is the third Iowa defensive back since 2013 to record two pick sixes in one game, joining B.J. Lowery and Josh Jackson. The senior cornerback now has eight interceptions in his Hawkeye career.

The Iowa secondary in general was pestering Penix all game long. Along with the three interceptions of Penix, multiple other passes were deflected and nearly intercepted.

On to Iowa State

The 1-0 Hawkeyes travel to Ames next week to compete against the No. 7 Cyclones. The game is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Saturday and will air on ABC.