Three cool things:
1. We have an Ed Miles play.
Ed was the outside linebacker with these guys Chad and Abdul. So, Ed had to stand a little taller most days for everyone to notice him. Thing was everyone already noticed Ed. He had one of those football bodies made for linebacker. Amani Jones is one of those. Maybe at the end of 2018, Aaron Mends could have a chance to show he might have something left even after tearing his ACL in spring practice.
Miles was Iowa’s last partial qualifier. The NCAA changed that rule after he enrolled.
Miles graduated from the UI.
“I know my mom’s excited. That’s one of the first things she wanted, for me to get my degree,” he said. “I just feel like staying on track and sticking it out with school, it means a lot to me.”
This probably was Miles’ greatest play. Read the gamer. You can tell these teams were tight because they could bust each others’ chops, even in postgames.
2. I have an Ed Hinkel game in mind, but quick thought on this one. We usually don’t see severely injured players in the postgame. Ed’s arm was broken in a couple of places. He made it back in 2005, so the story has a good ending.
But I remember how happy he was that night. I know this wasn’t a great Purdue team, but Purdue and Indiana were tough outs for early Kirk Ferentz teams. And hey, they’re on the schedule this year and I can’t honestly say I know which way those games are going to go. I’d pick Iowa over both right now. I think Purdue has some clean-up on defense.
I remember how happy Ed was, but I’m not sure he knew where he was. He had just broken his arm (in two places, no less).
3. RIP Joe Tiller. Any coach who basically walks up to the podium at Big Ten media days and says, “I’d rather be fly fishing in Wyoming, ya jerks,” is a god in my mind.
I think Purdue has its new Tiller in Jeff Brohm. Have fun with that, Hawkeyes.
Quote: “It was kind of a shock,” strong safety Marcus Paschal said. “We joke with Ed all the time about his hands. He’s got the worst hands on the defense. But he did drag that toe. Who’d have thought, Ed Miles, dragging his toe.”
Note: Kyle Schlicher had a bigger moment, but all four of his field goals in this one counted. Ferentz ID’d the importance of kicker early. But to this day, I can’t tell you the parameters for a scholarship. I think Iowa tries for the no-brainer scholarship kickers. After that, it feels like you’re a walk-on and you’ve got to prove it. That’s mostly worked. Miguel Recinos is going to be good in 2018.
Why No. 114? — 2005 is the beer you leave on a table at a party. Hey, it’s pretty good. You set it down and the wait staff scoops it up and throws it away. (Pretty good description of that onsides kick at Northwestern.)
PREVIOUS COVERAGE OF THE GAME
Game story from 2005
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — This came down to Chad Greenway’s fingernail and Ed Miles’ big left toe.
One second, Purdue is poised to take the lead and run off into the tree-lined and brick-built campus with a squeaker. The next second, Greenway’s fingernail, Miles’ big left toe and Iowa’s charter flight is rocking home into Saturday night.
With the Boilermakers at Iowa’s 11 yard-line, Greenway tipped Brandon Kirsch’s pass and Miles bobbled it, cradled it and dragged his left foot before falling out of bounds with the ball squeezed to his gut.
The play went up for replay review. From every angle, it was an Iowa victory.
In a conference crossroads game, the Hawkeyes (4-2, 2-1 Big Ten) won every available body part possible. Drew Tate’s arm, Albert Young’s legs, Clinton Solomon’s lithe body, Ed Hinkel’s heart, a growth spurt from a young defense, every Hawkeyes body part gets a helmet sticker after Iowa’s stunning 34-17 victory over Purdue before 64,785 fans at Ross-Ade Stadium — the Hawkeyes’ first road victory against the Boilers since 1991.
“You’ve got to give me the whole hand,” Greenway said. “It’ll look bad if you say fingernail. If it’s fingernail, the ball goes the other way. It’s physics, man.”
OK, Greenway got his whole hand on the Kirsch pass intended for tight end Charles Davis. Miles got both hands on it, eventually.
“It was kind of a shock,” strong safety Marcus Paschal said. “We joke with Ed all the time about his hands. He’s got the worst hands on the defense. But he did drag that toe. Who’d have thought, Ed Miles, dragging his toe.”
Miles could laugh it off. He made what turned out to be the game-turning play. And he made it with a little style. How often do you see a linebacker drag his toe?
“He’s going to do me like that?” Miles joked about Paschal’s assessment. “I don’t have the worst hands. Maybe the second-worst. I’ve got better hands than (linebacker) Abdul (Hodge). I’m not high on the list.”
Miles’ first career interception turned back the Boilermakers (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten), who marched to Iowa’s 11 trailing 23-17 with 12 minutes left in the game. If the Boilers, who’ve now lost three straight and are 2-3 for the first time under Coach Joe Tiller, go in for a touchdown, they’ve got all the momentum.
Iowa’s offense marched the ball up and down on Purdue’s defense, but the Hawkeyes came up with field goals when touchdowns were there for the taking.
The Hawkeyes cashed in the game’s only turnover for the full six. The play went to video replay review in the press box. But Tiller shrugged his shoulders. He knew it was an interception.
“It looked good to me. It looked good on replay board, too,” Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz said. “It was a critical play at a critical time. If you’re going to win in our conference, you have to make those kinds of plays.”
Behind a dominant offensive line, the Hawkeyes rolled 80 yards on 10 plays, burying the Boilers with a wide-receiver screen from Tate to Solomon for a 36-yard TD and a 29-17 lead with 6:29 left in the game.
It was the perfect call. Purdue’s secondary was down a safety and a cornerback. Wide receiver Ray Williams started at cornerback. Solomon burned him all day. Solomon faked a down-field route and took the pass from Tate.
Tackle Ben Gates and guard Mike Jones cleared out the pursuit and Solomon breezed into the end zone untouched. When they walked back to the sidelines, Tate told Solomon, who pleaded for the ball all day, that he almost called an audible.
“If he would’ve checked out of that, we’d have had problems,” said Solomon, who finished with five catches for a career-high 166 yards and two TDs, including a 78-yarder against Williams to tie the game at 7-7 in the first quarter. “We didn’t have that play in the gameplan this week. As soon as he (Tate) called it, my eyes got big. The offensive linemen were like, whoa. It was like a present.”
Everyone who plays offense for Iowa had big eyes against Purdue’s dud of a defense. Tate completed 19 of 33 for a career-high 357 yards, three TDs and no interceptions. Young had career highs of 36 carries for 165 yards.
Behind an Iowa offensive line that put the Boilers in a headlock and paraded them around the field, Iowa put up a season-high 535 yards, converted 6 of 15 third downs and won the time of possession, 35:54 to 24:06, including a whopping 21:31 in the second half.
“I think we had a chance right up until that interception in the end zone,” Tiller said. “We knew they would come out and be physical, and that’s how they played. They really took the game over at the line of scrimmage.”
Iowa’s offense rolled along without its consummate senior leader. At the end of a 43-yard reception that set up one of kicker Kyle Schlicher’s four field goals, Hinkel suffered a broken right arm. He said he broke the arm in two places and will likely need surgery. His season is obviously in jeopardy.
Ferentz didn’t know if Hinkel would be back this season.
“I’m hopeful, but I don’t know,” Ferentz said.
It looked as if it would be a long day for Iowa’s defense after Purdue’s first drive. The Boilers were perfect during an eight-play, 80-yard drive. It was practice easy. Rookie setting on a PlayStation video game easy.
That drive got Iowa’s attention. Purdue spread the field and put up crazy numbers — Kirsch completed 31 of 50 for 353 yards — but that’s all the Boilers did.
The Hawkeyes got their fingernails and big toes on them and hung on. OK, make that hands. They got their hands on them and hung on.