The Iowa Hawkeyes are finally back in our lives! Iowa is set to kick off their 2023 season as they play host to the Utah State Aggies inside Kinnick Stadium today.
The Hawkeyes will look to avoid the type of stalled start they got last year when they opened the year with a 7-3 win over South Dakota State. This year, Iowa plays host to an Aggies team that has seen nearly 60 players depart from what was a 6-7 2022 campaign.
Utah State lost four of five starters on their offensive line, three of their top five receivers and a handful of defensive starters. But they return a pair of quarterbacks who saw game action in 2022, including starter Cooper Legas. Now they look to come to Kinnick Stadium, collect their paycheck, and get a jumpstart on their 2023 campaign with an upset in mind.
For the Hawkeyes, the season opener is all about setting the tone on their 2023 season. After falling flat in 2022 with an 8-5 finish and fumbling away what could have been a second straight Big Ten West title due to ineptitude on offense, the Hawkeyes hit the portal hard, bringing in impact players at QB, TE, WR, OG, OT and LB.
With Brian Ferentz’s restructured contract, the Hawkeyes will be looking to put points on the board - something that proved nearly impossible in 2022, unless the defense was on the field. Iowa is looking to add more than a full touchdown worth of weekly production in 2023 and will need a big showing today to get that ball rolling.
Michigan transfer QB Cade McNamara remains a game-time decision, but is expected to get the start after trending in the right direction all week. If he can’t go or is pushed from the game, Wisconsin transfer Deacon Hill is poised to take his first live reps of his collegiate career.
Regardless of who is under center, the Iowa defense is poised to feast on a Utah State offensive line that has some serious kinks to work out on an offense overall that managed just 22 points per game a season ago.
As we get ready for the first kickoff of the season, here’s everything you need to know about today’s matchup.
Date: Saturday, September 2nd
Time: 11:00 am CT
Matchup: Utah State Aggies (0-0, 0-0) at #25 Iowa Hawkeyes (0-0, 0-0)
Location: Kinnick Stadium - Iowa City, IA
Updated Weather Forecast: mostly sunny with temps in the low-90s, 10mph winds
DraftKings Sportsbook Line: Iowa -23.5, O/U 43.5
Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.
Keep an eye out for the availability report, which is set to be published at 9am CT. Recall that’s a new item in the Big Ten this season with availability reported two hours before game time. While McNamara is expected to be active, official word will come with that report.