Iowa (5-1, 2-1 Big Ten) at Wisconsin (4-1, 2-0), Saturday, 3 p.m. CDT (Fox)
Line: Wisconsin by 10, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Series record: Wisconsin leads 49-45-2.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
Wisconsin and Iowa are the only Big Ten West teams at .500 or above in conference play, so the winner of this game becomes the division’s clear front-runner. Since 2004, the Wisconsin-Iowa winner has gained possession of the Heartland Trophy, a 72-pound brass bull designed by former Iowa football player Frank Strub. Iowa currently holds the trophy by virtue of its 24-10 victory last season.
Wisconsin running game vs. Iowa run defense: Wisconsin averages 203.6 yards rushing per game and 5.19 yards per carry to lead the Big Ten in both categories. Iowa ranks ninth in the Big Ten in yards rushing allowed per game (131.17) and eighth in yards allowed per carry (3.58), but the Hawkeyes have given up just one touchdown run all season.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Iowa: QB Deacon Hill is getting ready to face his former team. Hill was a Wisconsin reserve before entering the transfer portal midway through last season. Hill became Iowa’s starting quarterback after Cade McNamara tore his anterior cruciate ligament in a Sept. 30 victory over Michigan State. Hill has completed 37.5% of his passes for 274 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions this season.
Wisconsin: RB Braelon Allen’s success rate has generally determined how Wisconsin has fared against Iowa the last two seasons. He rushed for 104 yards on 20 carries in a 27-7 victory over Iowa in 2021 but was limited to 45 yards on 18 carries in a loss to the Hawkeyes last season. Allen has rushed for 472 yards while averaging 6.5 yards per carry this year.
FACTS & FIGURES
Iowa CB Cooper DeJean, one of the nation’s most versatile players, scored on a 32-yard interception return, had a 41-yard punt return to set up another touchdown and made 10 tackles in the Hawkeyes’ victory over Wisconsin last season. … Wisconsin CB Ricardo Hallman has four interceptions – all in the last three games – to tie for the Football Bowl Subdivision lead. He scored on a 95-yard interception return last week in Wisconsin’s 24-13 victory over Rutgers. … Allen has 2,982 career yards rushing, giving him a chance this week to become the 14th Badger to join the 3,000-yard club. No other Big Ten team has more than 11 3,000-yard rushers. … Iowa is averaging just 249.2 yards per game to rank 132nd out of 133 FBS teams, ahead of only Sam Houston State. … Iowa’s defense has allowed 400 or fewer yards in 20 straight games, the longest active such streak for any FBS team.