Head coach Kirk Ferentz and his Iowa Hawkeyes have had plenty of success in recent years against the Michigan State Spartans. They are looking to continue that success on Saturday when they will meet the Spartans in Iowa City. It is sure to be another interesting game between these two teams, but history and the performance of the Hawkeyes this season suggests that they will come out with a win on Saturday.
Both teams have a good defense, which will certainly make the game interesting. The Spartans are first and the Hawkeyes seventh nationally in total defense. However, the Hawkeyes have been on a roll, as they have won four in a row and have plenty of momentum going into this game. They started their Big Ten season off right last week, getting the win over the Minnesota Golden Gophers. The Spartans have not seen the same type of success this season. They are coming off a bye week after a tough loss to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on September 21. The Spartans have also been having some trouble offensively, as they have not yet established who their regular starting quarterback will be. Their defense may be able to stop the Hawkeyes, but it will not do them much good if their offensive woes continue and they are not able to get anything going offensively.
History is also on the Hawkeyes’ side in this series with the Spartans. It will be the 13th time in his career that Ferentz has faced the Spartans. Ferentz has won seven of the last 11 meetings between the two teams, and that includes a 4-2 record against current Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio. A victory for the Hawkeyes on Saturday would give Ferentz eight career wins over the Spartans. The only teams he has more wins over in the Big Ten are Minnesota and the Penn State Nittany Lions.
The Hawkeyes won a close one in double overtime in East Lansing last season. This has developed into a great rivalry and one that is never easy to predict. It should be another close game, but the Hawkeyes have history and momentum on their side this season. They are sure to get the win on Saturday in Iowa City.