Oedro

GAMEDAY College Football

Music City Bowl: Iowa 21, Kentucky 0

(AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

By TERESA M. WALKER
AP Sports Writer

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Joe Labas threw for 139 yards and a touchdown in his first start and the Iowa Hawkeyes posted the first shutout in the Music City Bowl's 24 years by beating Kentucky 21-0.

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz also capped his 24th season by matching the late Joe Paterno for the most bowl victories among Big Ten coaches with his 10th.

Iowa (8-5) got a bit of payback for ending last season losing to Kentucky in the Citrus Bowl after a late comeback by the Wildcats. The Hawkeyes defense outscored its offense, returning two interceptions for TDs in the second quarter. The Hawkeyes finished the season with their fifth win in six games.

Kentucky (7-6) lost for the third time in four games, this time without quarterback Will Levis and running back Chris Rodriguez as both opted out to prepare for the NFL draft. The loss ended the Wildcats' school record streak of bowl wins at four straight.

The Hawkeyes scored all their points in the second quarter to seize control, scoring twice 11 seconds apart early in the quarter.

Taking his first snaps in a college game with Spencer Petras out with an upper-body injury, Labas hit Sam LaPorta with a short pass that the tight end took 27 yards pushing through defenders. Labas then found Luke Lachey for a short pass, and the tight end finished off a 15-yard touchdown with 12:08 left.

Drew Stevens pushed the ensuing kickoff out of bounds, setting Kentucky up at the 35. Freshman Destin Wade, also making his collegiate debut, was picked off by Iowa safety Xavier Nwankpa who went 52 yards for the 14-0 lead.

Bowl MVP Cooper DeJean picked off Wade on third-and-10 from the Kentucky 7 and easily ran 14 yards for a 21-0 lead.

The Hawkeyes didn't miss All-American defensive back Kaevon Merriweather who opted out to prepare for the NFL draft. They posted their second shutout this season, holding Kentucky to 185 yards while sacking Wade four times and forcing the Wildcats to turn it over on downs twice.

THE TAKEAWAY

Iowa must improve on offense, especially with the Hawkeyes losing All-American linebacker Jack Campbell. This was the Hawkeyes' sixth game this season posting 222 yards of total offense or less.

Kentucky: The Wildcats gave Wade, from nearby Spring Hill, some experience even with Devin Leary coming in the transfer portal to replace Levis. Wade finished with 98 yards passing and 29 yards rushing as Kentucky was shut out for the first time since Oct. 19, 2019, in a loss to Georgia.

December 31, 2022


Scoring Summary
Second Quarter IowaKty
Iowa TD 12:08 Luke Lachey 15 yd pass from Joe Labas (Drew Stevens kick) 7 0
Iowa TD 11:57 Xavier Nwankpa 52 yd interception return (Drew Stevens kick) 14 0
Iowa TD 1:36 Cooper DeJean 14 yd interception return (Drew Stevens kick) 21 0
Team Stats
  Iowa Kentucky
First downs 10 10
  Rushing 3 4
  Passing 7 6
  Penalty 0 0
3rd Down Efficiency 0-11, 0% 2-18, 11%
4th down efficiency 0-2, 0% 3-5, 60%
Rushes-Yards 24-67 32-68
Passing Yards 139 117
Return Yards 108 41
Completions-Attempts-Int 14-24-0 22-37-2
Sacks-Yards Lost 1--6 4--27
Punts 8 10
Punts-Average 48.3 40.9
Fumbles Lost 0-0 3-0
Penalties - Yards 2-10 3-35
Time of Possession 25:43 34:17
Iowa Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
J. Labas 14 24 139 1 0
Kentucky Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
D. Wade 16 30 98 0 2
D. Hogan 6 7 19 0 0
Iowa Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
J. Patterson 4 23 5.8 0
K. Johnson 9 17 1.9 0
J. Labas 4 11 2.8 0
S. LaPorta 2 6 3.0 0
N. Ragaini 1 5 5.0 0
L. Williams 3 3 1.0 0
D. Vines 1 2 2.0 0
Kentucky Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
J. McClain 10 40 4.0 0
D. Wade 16 29 1.8 0
L. Wright 1 6 6.0 0
T. Robinson 1 5 5.0 0
D. Key 1 -2 -2.0 0
B. Brown 2 -4 -2.0 0
Iowa Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
S. LaPorta 5 56 11.2 0
L. Lachey 3 36 12.0 1
D. Vines 2 23 11.5 0
N. Ragaini 2 21 10.5 0
L. Williams 1 2 2.0 0
J. Patterson 1 1 1.0 0
Kentucky Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
D. Key 6 47 7.8 0
T. Robinson 5 27 5.4 0
B. Brown 5 24 4.8 0
J. McClain 3 7 2.3 0
L. Wright 2 6 3.0 0
J. Dingle 1 6 6.0 0
Iowa Interceptions
Player Int Yards
X. Nwankpa 1 52
C. DeJean 1 14
Kentucky Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Iowa Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
T. Taylor 8 386 48.3
Kentucky Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
W. Berry 10 409 40.9
Iowa Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
C. DeJean 3 42 14.0
Kentucky Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
T. Robinson 3 25 8.3
Iowa Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Kentucky Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
B. Brown 1 16 16.0
Iowa Missed FG
Player Length
Kentucky Missed FG
Player Length




LovelyWholesale
D1SportsNet