Hawkeyes, Northwestern were America's top escape artists of 2015

Iowa and Wildcats were 5-0 in games decided by one score

When you look back and see just how Iowa went 12-0 in the 2015 college football regular-season, you have to start with close games.

Every coach will tell you that you must win the close games to have a great season. Iowa did, getting five wins in games determined by one score (eight points or less).

The only other FBS team to go 5-0 in one-score games was Northwestern, which peeled off four straight immediately after getting walloped 40-10 at home by the Hawkeyes.

Oklahoma State was 4-0 in games decided by one score. Clemson, the only other 12-0 regular-season team, won three of them.

A breakdown of Iowa’s:

Pittsburgh, W 30-27: Marshall Koehn made a 57-yard field goal with no time remaining.

At Wisconsin, W 10-6: The Badgers fumbled the ball away at the Iowa 4 on their next-to-last possession, then were stopped on downs at the Iowa 16 on their last drive.

At Indiana, W 35-27: The Hoosiers scored to cut their deficit to eight points, but failed to recover an onside kick with 2:24 left.


Minnesota, W 40-35: The Gophers pulled within one score with 1:16 remaining, but their subsequent onside kick went out of bounds.

At Nebraska, W 28-20: The Huskers kicked a field goal with 1:17 left, but their following onside kick was covered by Iowa’s Henry Krieger Coble.

Of course, Iowa lost a one-score game in the Big Ten championship, 16-13 to Michigan State. The Spartans were 5-1 in one-score games during the regular-season. Here are the one-score regular-season records of Power Five conference teams. Conference-title games and bowl games are not included.


Iowa 5-0

Northwestern 5-0

Illinois 2-0

Michigan State 5-1

Ohio State 2-1

Penn State 2-1

Michigan 2-2

Wisconsin 2-2

Minnesota 3-3

Indiana 3-4

Maryland 1-2

Nebraska 3-5

Rutgers 1-3

Purdue 0-3


BIG 12

Oklahoma State 4-0

TCU 5-1

Oklahoma 2-1

Kansas State 3-2

Texas 2-3

Baylor 1-2

Texas Tech 1-2

West Virginia 1-2

Kansas 0-2

Iowa State 0-3



Texas A&M 2-0

LSU 2-0

Florida 5-1

Georgia 4-1

Mississippi 2-1

Mississippi State 2-1

Vanderbilt 3-2

Kentucky 4-3

Arkansas 3-3

Missouri 3-3

Alabama 1-1

Auburn 3-4

Tennessee 2-4

South Carolina 1-5



UCLA 3-1

USC 3-1

Stanford 2-1

California 3-2

Utah 3-2

Arizona 2-2

Oregon 2-2

Washington State 3-3

Colorado 2-5

Washington 1-3

Oregon State 0-1

Arizona State 0-2




Clemson 3-0

Miami 4-1

North Carolina 3-1

Pittsburgh 4-2

Florida State 2-1

Duke 3-2

Louisville 4-3

Syracuse 2-2

Virginia 3-5

Virginia Tech 2-4

Wake Forest 2-4

Boston College 1-5

Georgia Tech 1-6

N.C. State 0-1



Navy 1-0

Houston 3-1

Notre Dame 4-2

Toledo 3-2

Boise State 1-2



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