Halftime reactions | Ohio State football leads Iowa, 26-10

Hawkeye quarterback Spencer Petras has two interceptions and a fumble through the first half


Jerod Ringwald

Iowa kicker Drew Stevens kicks a field goal during a football game between Iowa and No. 2 Ohio State at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022. (Jerod Ringwald/The Daily Iowan)

Chloe Peterson and Austin Hanson

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Iowa football team is trailing No. 2 Ohio State, 26-10, at halftime in Columbus. The Hawkeyes are in the midst of their first trip to Ohio Stadium since 2013.

The lead has changed hands three times so far this afternoon. Ohio State struck first Saturday, scoring on a 46-yard field goal from kicker Noah Ruggles. The 3-pointer was set up by an interception Iowa quarterback Spencer Petras threw near his own 29-yard line.

The Hawkeyes then took the lead from the Buckeyes when defensive lineman Joe Evans forced Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud to fumble. After Stroud put the ball on the ground, Evans scooped it up on his way to the end zone for a touchdown.

Iowa put three more points on the board in the first half via a 49-yard field goal from true freshman Drew Stevens.

Ohio State managed two touchdowns in the first half. The rest of its points came via field goal attempts.

Iowa might cover the spread

I don’t want to jinx this for those that bet the Hawkeyes would cover today’s 29.5-point spread, but it’s hard to argue that Iowa hasn’t looked better than many expected it to. After all, the Hawkeyes are only down two possessions at halftime.

I’m not going to make a case for Iowa keeping this game close, but I could see it losing by fewer than 30 points. I’m not predicting the Hawkeyes lose by one or two possessions. But the Hawkeyes could fall in four-possession fashion and still cover.

Things aren’t, however, looking great for under bettors. The Hawkeyes and Buckeyes have already combined for 36 points today. Most sportsbooks set today’s total at 49.5. Ohio State and Iowa are already over halfway to the mark.

Had Iowa not scored a defensive touchdown in the first half, the game would feel a lot different. The Hawkeyes’ offense has been outscored 19-3. Petras finished the first half 6-of-14 for 49 yards. He’s also turned the ball over three times, including a pick six late in the second quarter.

Stroud has been less effective than anticipated, going 10-of-17 for 105 yards. The Buckeyes’ offense gained 133 yards and scored one touchdown. Iowa picked up 67 yards in the first half.

If Iowa’s defense can keep limiting Ohio State’s offense in the second half, the Hawkeyes have a legitimate chance to cover.

 — Austin Hanson, Pregame Editor

Ferentzes continue ride-or-die on Spencer Petras

Alex Padilla won’t see a snap this season, unless Petras is injured.

Even though the Hawkeyes only have two games this year where the offense has scored more than one touchdown, Petras has trotted out to the huddle for every single offensive snap.

Throw an interception on the first play of the game against Ohio State? Still out there.

Fumble the ball within your own 30-yard line for the Buckeyes to recover? Still out there.

Throw a pick six on the first play of a drive late in the second quarter? You bet he’s still trotting out to the field.

Petras had three turnovers in the first half of the Hawkeyes’ game against the Buckeyes, but Padill kept the signature red hat all Iowa backup QBs wear on his head.

At this point, Kirk and Brian Ferentz will run Petras into the ground before they replace him with Padilla. He could single-handedly have eight turnovers in a single game, and the Hawkeyes’ head coach and offensive coordinator wouldn’t bench him.

Following Iowa’s 9-6 loss to Illinois ahead of the bye week, Kirk Ferentz said he didn’t anticipate any coaching or personnel changes during the bye. In Brian Ferentz’s press conference four days later, he referred to mobile quarterback play as “backyard football.”

Both of the Ferentzes say Petras looks better than Padilla in practice. But practice isn’t a game, and Petras is not performing to the standard of most Group of Five quarterbacks. 

To be fair, we don’t know if Padilla is better than Petras in a game situation this season. But Padilla has never had a chance to prove himself to the coaches or the fans in 2022. 

At this rate, he never will.  Iowa seems complacent at both the quarterback position and play caller.

— Chloe Peterson, Sports Editor