UPSET CITY: North Dakota St tops No. 13 Iowa on final play
Cam Pedersen kicked a 37-yard field as time expired and North Dakota State pulled off a 23-21 upset of No. 13 Iowa on Saturday for its sixth straight win over an FBS opponent.
The Bison went for a 2-point conversion down 21-20 with 3:41 left, but couldn't punch it in. North Dakota State's defense then held, and quarterback Easton Stick's 29-yard run put the Bison in position for the biggest win in school history.
The loss was just the fourth by a ranked FBS team to an FCS school. North Dakota State isn't just another Football Championship Subdivision team, though. The Bison have won the last five FCS national titles.
Against the Hawkeyes, they ran for 239 yards and held Iowa to 231 total yards.
"Am I shocked that we lost? Yeah, to an extent. But these guys came ready to play," Iowa defensive tackle Jaleel Johnson said.
Stick had 124 yards passing and a touchdown for the Bison (3-0), who also snapped Iowa's nine-game home winning streak.
C.J. Beathard had three TD passes for Iowa (2-1). But the Hawkeyes ran for just 34 yards on 25 carries.
"I thought we'd be able to run the ball a little bit better just because that's what we do," Beathard said.
Iowa: The Hawkeyes can forget about the playoffs. Barring something extraordinary, it's tough to imagine the committee letting in a team that lost to an FCS school - even one as talented as North Dakota State.
North Dakota State: North Dakota State is FCS is name only. The Bison's blocking at every position was exactly how coaches draw it up, and they didn't commit a penalty in the first half. North Dakota State might not lose again all season - and a sixth straight FCS title is a distinct possibility.
Iowa: The Hawkeyes open their first nine-game Big Ten season with a trip to Rutgers next weekend, their first road game and their first-ever against the Scarlet Knights. It should be, along with an October 15 meeting at Purdue, the easiest game the Hawkeyes will play outside of Iowa City.
North Dakota State: The Bison return home to face a decent Missouri State team in their league opener. That'll likely be the first breather for the Bison, who won their first two games in overtime.