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January 1, 2014
Rewind: LSU 21, Iowa 14
Jeremy Hill ran for a career-high 216 yards and two touchdowns to lead LSU to a 21-14 victory against Iowa in the Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Wednesday afternoon.
HOW THEY SCORED
Score: Anthony Jennings 2-yard run. Colby Delahoussaye PAT. LSU 7, Iowa 0
Drive: 8 plays, 77 yards
Time of Possession: 4:01
Time Remaining: 10:59, first quarter
Key Play: On first-and-ten, Jeremy Hill ran 42 yards for a first down at Iowa's 35.
Score: Hill 14-yard run. Delahoussaye PAT. LSU 14, Iowa 0
Drive: 7 plays, 39 yards
Time of Possession: 2:52
Time Remaining: 7:23, second quarter
Key Play: On third-and-13, Jennings completed a 17-yard pass to Alfred Blue for a first down at Iowa's 25.
Score: Mark Weisman 2-yard run. Mike Meyer PAT. LSU 14, Iowa 7
Drive: 3 plays, 1 yard
Time of Possession: :52
Time Remaining: 5:52, third quarter
Key Play: John Lowdermilk intercepted a Jennings pass and returned the ball 71 yards to LSU's 1.
Score: Hill 37-yard run. Delahoussaye PAT. LSU 21, Iowa 7
Drive: 6 plays, 92 yards
Time of Possession: 3:02
Time Remaining: 2:02, fourth quarter
Key Play: On first-and-ten, Hill ran 20 yards for a first down at Iowa's 42.
Score: Kevonte Martin-Manley 4-yard pass from C.J. Bethard. Meyer PAT. LSU 21, Iowa 14
Drive: 2 plays, 4 yards
Time of Possession: :20
Time Remaining: 1:42, fourth quarter
Key Play: Jordan Cotton returned James Hairston's kickoff 96 yards to LSU's 4.
Iowa had an opportunity to tie the score in the fourth quarter. The Hawkeyes had a fourth-and-one at LSU's 16. Pressured by Deion Jones, Iowa backup quarterback Bethard had his pass intercepted by Craig Loston at the Tigers' 8. LSU proceeded to go 92 yards for the victory-clinching touchdown - a 37-yard run by Hill.
LSU KEY OFFENSIVE PERFORMERS
In what may have been his final game in a LSU uniform, Hill carried his team to victory. Hill's 216 yards were the most for a Tigers back in nine seasons. Alley Broussard rushed for 250 yards against Ole Miss in 2004. Hill's 216 yards were the third most for a LSU player in a bowl game. Kevin Faulk had 234 yards against Michigan State in the 1995 Independence Bowl and Rondell Mealey had 222 yards in the 1997 Independence Bowl. Hill, the game's Most Valuable Player, finished the season with 1,401 yards - the second best in school history. Charles Alexander ran for 1,686 yards in 1977. Hill had 16 rushing touchdowns this season - the fourth highest for a LSU running back. Hill received very little help as the remainder of the Tigers offensive players accounted for just 86 yards.
LSU KEY DEFENSIVE PERFORMERS
Loston had one of his best performances in his last game. Loston made six tackles, including three behind the line of scrimmage. One of three tackles-for-loss was a sack. Loston also broke up a pass besides his one key interception. Linebacker D.J. Welter and safety/nickel back Jalen Mills also had six tackles. End Jermauria Rasco recorded four tackles and knocked down two passes. Two of tackle Anthony Johnson's stops resulted in losses. Linebacker Lamin Barrow was credited with five tackles to give him 91 for the season.
LSU MISSED SCORING OPPORTUNITIES
The Tigers picked up touchdowns on three of the four times they had the ball inside Iowa's 40. The one exception took place in the second quarter when LSU started at the Hawkeyes' 36. The Tigers went three-and-out after two short runs by Hill and a Jennings incompletion. LSU failed to take advantage of good field position. Twice in the second quarter, the Tigers went three-and-out after starting at their 40. After moving to Iowa's 48 in the third quarter, Jennings had his pass intercepted by Lowdermilk which was returned 71 yards to LSU's 1. In the fourth quarter, the Tigers began a drive at Iowa's 48. LSU had to punt after three plays.
LSU CRITICAL MISTAKES
The Tigers defense could have put up a shutout if not for two mistakes - one by the offense and one by the special teams. Lowdermilk intercepted a Jennings pass and returned the ball 71 yards to LSU's 1. It would have been a touchdown except for the fact that Lowdermilk dropped the ball before reaching the end zone. It took Iowa three plays before scoring its first touchdown. Late in the game, the Tigers allowed Cotton to return a kickoff 96 yards to LSU's 4. The Hawkeyes scored on second down after the replay official reversed a fumble recovery by Quentin Thomas. The Tigers would have won rather easily if not for those two miscues.
There was a huge difference in the rushing yardage. LSU finished with 220 yards on the ground with Hill getting 216. Meanwhile, Iowa ended with only 76 yards. Weisman, who needed 63 yards to reach 1,000 for the season, was held to 37 yards on 18 carries. Due to its running game, LSU had possession for almost 36 minutes. The Hawkeyes had three turnovers - a fumble recovery by James Wright on a muffed punt and interceptions by Tre'Davious White and Loston. The Tigers had only one turnover - an interception by Jennings. LSU was 10-of-21 on third-down situations - not as good as its 58 percent mark, but certainly respectable. Iowa converted just six of its 19 third-down situations.
LSU had lost seven of its previous nine bowl games decided by seven points or less. The two victories came against Oklahoma (21-14) in the 2003 national title game and against Clemson (10-7) in the 1996 Peach Bowl. The Tigers were 0-2 in one-possession bowl games under Les Miles - losing to Penn State (19-17) in the 2010 Capital One Bowl and to Clemson (25-24) in the 2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl. . .The victory gave LSU its fourth straight season of at least ten wins - a first for the school. . .In his nine seasons as Tigers coach, Miles has posted double-digit victories seven times. The two exceptions were 8-5 in 2008 and 9-4 in 2009. . .Thomas replaced defensive tackle Ego Ferguson in the starting lineup. . .Mills started at safety next to Loston. In the dime package, Ricky Jefferson played safety so Mills could move inside. . .Hill tied the school record for 100-yard rushing games in a season with seven. Faulk (1996), Alexander (1977) and Steve Van Buren (1943) also had seven 100-yard rushing games in a single season. . .Hill moved ahead of Harvey Williams and Garry James into seventh place on the school's all-time rushing touchdown list. Hill has run for 28 touchdowns in just two seasons. . .Odell Beckham ended the year with 1,152 receiving yards - the fourth highest for a LSU receiver. Jarvis Landry closed the season with 1,193 yards - the third best for a Tigers receiver. Both Beckham and Landry had only two receptions against Iowa. Beckham gained 35 yards, while Landry picked up 21. . .Beckham set a LSU record for yards per catch in a season at 19.5 (59 receptions for 1,152 yards). Josh Reed held the record at 18.5 in 2001 (94 receptions for 1,740 yards). . .Beckham passed Williams for the No. 5 spot on the school's career all-purpose yard rankings. Beckham had 93 all-purpose yards in the bowl game to give him 4,081 for his career. . .Jamie Keehn had his busiest and best day punting the ball. He averaged 46.9 yards on ten punts. Four of his kicks pinned Iowa inside its 20-yard line. . .In his first college start, Jennings accounted for only 51 yards. He completed seven of 19 passes for 82 yards with one interception. Due to four sacks, Jennings had minus-29 yards rushing. He did run two yards for a touchdown. . .Iowa starting quarterback Jake Rudock completed just nine of 22 passes for 102 yards and an interception before leaving the game in the second half with a knee injury. . .Martin-Manley, the Hawkeyes' top receiver, was held to one reception. . .LSU ended a two-game bowl losing streak - against Alabama in the 2011 national title game and Clemson in the 2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl. Since 2004, the Tigers are 2-2 against Big Ten teams in bowl games. LSU beat Ohio State in the 2007 national championship game and lost to Iowa in the 2005 Capital One and to Penn State in the 2010 Capital One Bowl. Iowa finished the year with an 8-5 record. . . The paid attendance was 51,296.
WHAT THE HEAD COACH HAD TO SAY
Les Miles: "The defense played spectacular. We put the defense on the field, on the field, on the field in the second half. From start to finish the defense was dominant. We played as a team and did everything to ensure victory. The players wanted to be part of a legacy. I sure did enjoy this game just like 20 years ago."
LSU will play Wisconsin in the 2014 season opener at Reliant Stadium in Houston on Saturday, August 30. The Badgers (9-4) lost to South Carolina in the Capital One Bowl on Wednesday afternoon.