After a slow start against a very good Wisconsin defense that had been among the best in the nation coming into Saturday’s matchup, the Iowa offense got rolling in the second half. When it was all said and done, they came away with 28 points and 338 yards of offense, the most given up by the Badger in either department all season.
A big part of Iowa’s success down the stretch was senior wide receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette. ISM is known as Iowa’s dynamic game breaker who can change the outcome of a game on a single reception or kick return. While it wasn’t just one play on Satruday, Smith-Marsette was a difference maker on senior day.
When it was all said and done, ISM finished with a team-high seven receptions for 140 yards and a pair of touchdowns as quarterback Spencer Petras found some touch on his deep passes. That included Iowa’s longest touchdown pass of the season when Petras hit ISM for a 53-yard touchdown pass late in the third quarter to extend Iowa’s lead to two scores.
PETRAS TO IHMIR SMITH-MARSETTE 6 FOR 6 AGAIN pic.twitter.com/maA2Z1ikHp— Heavens! (@HeavensFX) December 12, 2020
Today, the performance was rewarded as the Big Ten conference recognized Smith-Marsette as the Big Ten offensive player of the week. That’s ISM’s first such honor this season and well-deserved after a spectacular performance on senior day.
Your #B1GFootball Offensive #PlayeroftheWeek— Big Ten Football (@B1Gfootball) December 14, 2020
@_ihmirr_ of @HawkeyeFootball #B1G https://t.co/4ec8xAA0WJ pic.twitter.com/L6oI2p8UPX
On the season, Smith-Marsette now has 345 receiving yards and 4 receiving touchdowns on 25 catches for an average of 13.8 yards per catch. He also has 54 rushing yards and a rushing TD on 7 carries.
Ihmir and the rest of Iowa’s seniors will get a curtain call on their senior day performances after we learned on Sunday that the Hawkeyes will play host to Michigan on Saturday evening as part of the Big Ten’s Championship Week. Here’s hoping the week 8 performance sparks some final fireworks for the New Jersey native.