Iowa Football

Fun Facts: Middle Tennesse-Iowa, Tom Petty edition

The one and only meeting between the two teams

It’s Middle Tennessee and Iowa, Fun Facts. Let’s go. Or let’s not and say we did.

1. This is the first meeting between the two schools, with none scheduled in the future.

2. Middle Tennessee hasn’t had a losing season since 2011 and has played in bowl games the last four seasons. Three of those four bowls were in the Bahamas, Honolulu and New Orleans, so the Blue Raiders haven’t done too badly.

4. Iowa is tied for third nationally in first downs allowed per game, fourth in time of possession per game, tied for sixth in fewest tackles for losses allowed, seventh in scoring defense, 12th in total defense, 13th in rushing defense.

4. The Hawkeyes have scored each of their last 15 quarters, dating to the second quarter of last season’s Outback Bowl.

5. Iowa has won its last 10 nonconference games.

6. Middle Tennessee has allowed 40.5 points per game and has been outgained by 138 yards per game in its two contests against Power Five opponents Michigan and Duke.

7. Only TCU (3.0) is averaging more field goals per game than Iowa’s 2.7.

8. Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz is the longest-tenured FBS head coach at 21 seasons. MTSU’s Rick Stockstill is sixth at 14 seasons.

9. Stockstill isn’t a job-jumper. He was an assistant coach at Clemson from 1989 to 2002.

10. Iowa is 6-1 against current Conference USA programs. The lone loss was at Tulsa in 1996.

11. The Hawkeyes are the only Big Ten team playing a nonconference game this week.

12. The Blue Raiders’ previous game was against the Blue Devils of Duke. The Blue Raiders had the blues after a 41-18 loss.

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13. Middle Tennessee is in Murfreesboro, the geographical center of Tennessee. That makes it better-named than the University of South Florida, which is located in Tampa, which is in central Florida.

14. Though Murfreesboro is the center of the state, you couldn’t balance the state on your head while there. The Smoky Mountains on the east side would make that too problematic.

15. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers tribute band The Petty Junkies will perform Saturday night at Hop Springs Beer Park in Murfreesboro.

Comments: (319) 368-8840; mike.hlas@thegazette.com

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