Straight to the Banks
Iowa QB passes for three TDs in 34-9 rout of MichiganPosted: Saturday October 26, 2002 7:59 PM
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- The Iowa Hawkeyes beat Michigan so badly that they were able to celebrate and sing with their fans in a mostly empty Michigan Stadium.
"I enjoyed that," Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said after Iowa's 34-9 victory Saturday. "I'd be lying if I said I didn't."
Brad Banks threw three touchdown passes as the 13th-ranked Hawkeyes handed the eighth-ranked Wolverines their worst home loss since 1967.
"Wow, that's a long time," Banks said when told of the fact. "It was real fun being in the Big House and doing some big things."
The Hawkeyes (8-1, 5-0 Big Ten) won their sixth straight game and beat Michigan for the first time since 1990, the last time Iowa won a Big Ten title.
Michigan (6-2, 3-1) had won four straight. The last time the Wolverines lost this badly at home was a 34-0 defeat to Michigan State on Oct. 14, 1967, two years before Bo Schembechler became head coach.
"It was embarrassing," said running back Chris Perry, who was held to 14 yards on nine carries.
Iowa scored 21 straight points after Markus Curry fumbled a punt return in the third quarter, just after the Wolverines had cut the deficit to 10-9. Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said the play was the game's turning point.
"After that, it was tough sledding," he said.
The Hawkeyes are in good position to at least earn a share of the conference championship, with home games remaining against Wisconsin and Northwestern before the regular-season finale at Minnesota. Ohio State is not on their schedule.
To earn a spot in the Rose Bowl, the Hawkeyes must win their final three games, and Ohio State must lose at least once, because the Buckeyes would win the tiebreaker with a better overall record.
"I'm smelling the roses," said C.J. Jones, who caught two TD passes. "Right now, it's smelling real good, and it's looking real good. I just hope we get there."
The last three times Iowa went to the Rose Bowl -- after the 1990, 1985 and 1981 seasons -- it had to beat the Wolverines.
Banks went 18-of-29 for 222 yards. Two of his TD passes went to Jones, who caught eight passes for 81 yards, and the third was to Lewis.
The only thing the Wolverines did well was limit Russell to 28 yards on 20 carries before he left with a hand injury in the third quarter. But they allowed Jermelle Lewis to gain 109 yards and score two TDs.
Russell, a former Michigan recruit, was eighth in the nation with an average of 128.1 yards rushing entering the game.
On their first two drives, the Hawkeyes gained 186 yards on 22 plays in nine-plus minutes. Iowa went ahead 7-0 on the game's opening possession when Banks threw a screen pass to Jones, who slipped a tackle and ran 39 yards for a score.
Then Iowa went from its 12 to the Michigan 1 but settled for a 19-yard field goal from Nate Kaeding.
The Wolverines took advantage of a break late in the second quarter after offsetting penalties forced Iowa to punt a second time.
David Bradley fumbled the snap, which gave Michigan the ball at the Iowa 1. Perry scored with 1:13 left in the half, but Philip Brabbs missed the extra point.
Adam Finley -- the third kicker Michigan has used this season -- made a 40-yard field goal on his first career attempt early in the third quarter to cut the Wolverines' deficit to 10-9.
Michigan seemed to seize the momentum after forcing Iowa to punt on the ensuing possession, but Curry fumbled the return.
Three plays later, Banks threw a 3-yard TD pass to Jones to put Iowa ahead 17-9. Lewis then scored on a 5-yard run late in the third and a 23-yard reception early in the fourth. Kaeding made his 20th consecutive field goal with 2:49 left.
Michigan senior safety Cato June was taken off the field on a stretcher with his head immobilized after a fourth-quarter collision with some teammates and Iowa players. He was hospitalized for observation.
"The only thing I know is that when he left the field, he was conscious and he was moving all of his extremities," Carr said.