Iowa football falls to No. 2 Ohio State in historic fashion

The Buckeyes downed the Hawkeyes, 54-10, at Ohio Stadium. Fifty-four points is the most Iowa has given up in a single game during Kirk Ferentz’s head coaching tenure.


Jerod Ringwald

Iowa running back Kaleb Johnson searches for yards during a football game between Iowa and No. 2 Ohio State at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022.

Austin Hanson, Pregame Editor

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Junior quarterback Alex Padilla took his first snaps of the 2022 season Saturday at Ohio Stadium. Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz put him into the game after benching senior Spencer Petras at halftime.

When Padilla entered the game, Iowa trailed, 26-10. He committed two turnovers on his first two drives. He fumbled his first snap of the game and Ohio State recovered. Then, he threw an interception inside his own 20-yard line.

By the time the fourth quarter began, Ohio State led 40-10. Padilla played seven total drives, and Iowa’s offense did not score while he was under center. He went 5-of-10 for 32 yards in the Hawkeyes’ 54-10 loss to the Buckeyes.

“I think, as a whole, our team didn’t really perform the way that we wanted to,” Padilla said postgame. “We obviously turned the ball over way too many times to beat a good team. They’re a really good team. You know, it’s just a disappointing performance for all of us. I thought we did a few good things out there, but obviously there’s a lot we need to improve on going into next week.”

Padilla committed fewer turnovers than Petras, who threw two interceptions and lost a fumble in the first half. Petras’ first interception came on the opening play of the game, giving Ohio State the ball inside the Iowa 30-yard line. Petras also threw a pick six with 3:25 remaining in the second quarter.

Petras finished the game 6-of-14 for 49 yards. Padilla and Petras were sacked a combined five times as the Hawkeyes’ offense scored three total points. Iowa turned the ball over nine times on the game.

“[It’s] just a cumulative thing,” Iowa head coach Ferentz said. “I just think, you know, at that point, it was the best thing to do. But again, it’s just a tough, tough situation for either quarterback.”

The Buckeyes did not win Saturday’s contest in wire-to-wire fashion. The Hawkeyes briefly led, 7-3, during the first quarter.

After Petras’ game-opening pick set up Ohio State’s first field goal of the day, Iowa’s defense found a way to score the next time the Buckeyes got the ball. Senior defensive end Joe Evans forced Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud to fumble near the Buckeye 11-yard line. Evans then picked the fumble up and returned it to the end zone for a touchdown. 

“At the moment, I felt so on top of the world,” Evans said. “Like, you saw where all the parents were, and that’s where I ran it in. I just looked at my family. Me and my dad, before every game, we give each other a little chest bump. So, if you can see in the celebration, that’s what I did. I looked at him and did that.”

Evans’ score gave Iowa a 7-3 lead. The Hawkeyes advantage didn’t last, as running back Miyan Williams scored a 2-yard touchdown on the Buckeyes’ ensuing drive. Once Ohio State recaptured the lead, it never let it go.

The 54 points Iowa’s defense surrendered Saturday is the most the Hawkeyes have allowed during Ferentz’s near-25-year head coaching tenure at Iowa. The previous high came in the Hawkeyes’ 51-14 loss to the Minnesota Golden Gophers in November 2014.

Before Saturday’s contest, Iowa’s defense ranked seventh and third in the nation in total and scoring defense, respectively. Ohio State’s offense was rated second in the country before it played Iowa.

Big Picture

The Hawkeyes are now 3-4 on the season. Iowa hasn’t dipped under .500 since it started the 2020 season 0-2.

The Hawkeyes won 12 games in a row after they started 0-2 in 2020. Since they put together the 12-game winning streak, the Hawkeyes have gone 7-8.

“I not only think it’s possible, I believe it’s possible, and I believe it’s going to happen,” Ferentz said of Iowa’s chances to put together a late-season win streak. “It’s up to us to make it happen. So, absolutely, I believe it’s possible. That’s our job. That’s our goal. That’s what we try to do any time we compete is get yourself in a position where you can go out and be successful. We weren’t able to do it today, but we’re going to keep pushing hard.”

Iowa is currently tied for last place in the Big Ten West with Wisconsin. 

Up next

The Hawkeyes will play their first game at Kinnick Stadium since Oct. 1 next week. Iowa will welcome Northwestern for its homecoming game.

Iowa lost its last home game to Michigan, 27-14. The last time Northwestern and Iowa met, the Hawkeyes picked up a 17-13 win at Ryan Field in Evanston.