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Iowa Football: Have McNamara, Hawkeyes Met Expectations Through Non-Conference Play?

Iowa is 3-0 and ranked heading into Big Ten play. How does that stack up with where Hawkeye fans expected preseason?

Western Michigan v Iowa
Has Cade lived up to the hype?
Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NCAA. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Iowa Hawkeyes fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate in the weekly emailed surveys.

The Hawkeyes emerged victorious in week three with a final score of 41-10, which would seem to indicate a a solid blowout where Iowa controlled things comfortably from start to finish. Of course, that was not the case.

The Hawkeyes struggled to keep up with Western Michigan in the early goings, let alone put them away. Iowa went into a lightning delay late in the first quarter down 7-0 and really needed that time off the field to regroup and refocus. They did and ground the Broncos down with the running game the rest of the day.

While the improvements in the running game were great to see, if anything we saw a regression in the passing game. Starting QB Cade McNamara finished the day just 9 for 19 passing for an abysmal 103 yards and while he did throw a pair of touchdown passes, he also threw a pair of interceptions.

On the season, McNamara has completed just 53.5% of his passes for 417 yards (139 per game) and four TDs with three interceptions. Now, that is an improvement on Spencer Petras, who completed 48.1% of his passes for 376 yards (125 per game) with one TD and three interceptions through three games a season ago. But we want to know how the fanbase is feeling about those numbers and how McNamara has played through the non-conference slate.

Perhaps more importantly, the Hawkeyes are 3-0 and ranked inside the top-25. Has anything about your views on the season as a whole changed? When we asked fans preseason, the average response was somewhere between an 8-4 and 9-3 finish. Does that still hold true?

And what about this week’s trip to Penn State? Can Iowa hang? When we asked before the season, 96% of you said no. Maybe the rain in Happy Valley will change your mind?