Hawkeyes face Kentucky in Vrbo Citrus Bowl on 93.1 The Buzz on New Year’s Day

The 15th-ranked University of Iowa football team will face No. 22 Kentucky in the 2022 VRBO Citrus Bowl on Saturday in Orlando, Florida. Kickoff is set for noon (CT) from Camping World Stadium and the game will be televised on ABC.

Coverage on New Year’s Day from the Hawkeye Sports Network begins at 10 a.m. on 93.1 The Buzz.

The Hawkeyes will be making their 34th bowl game appearance and their second Citrus Bowl appearance (formerly the Capital One Bowl). Iowa defeated No. 11 LSU, 30-25, on an improbable Drew Tate-to-Warren Holloway 56-yard touchdown pass as time expired on Jan. 1, 2005.

Iowa enters the game having won three consecutive bowl games for the second time in program history. (The 2020 Music City Bowl was canceled because of COVID.) The Hawkeyes are 17-15-1 all-time in bowl games.

The Hawkeyes have never faced Kentucky in program history. Iowa is 6-5 all-time in bowl games against current Southeastern Conference opponents.

1st and 10

1: Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz is one bowl win shy of tying Joe Paterno (10) for most bowl wins as a member of the Big Ten Conference. Ferentz has a 9-8 bowl record and has led Iowa to three straight bowl wins, tying its longest such streak in program history. Ferentz’s nine bowl wins tie Barry Alvarez for second in Big Ten history.

2: C Tyler Linderbaum is the 12th Hawkeye to earn unanimous consensus All-America status and the 28th Hawkeye to earn consensus All-America status. Iowa football has had a consensus All-American in three straight seasons for the first time in program history. Linderbaum is also the 2021 Rimington Trophy winner, which is awarded to the nation’s premier center in college football, and was also selected as the 2021 Big Ten Conference Rimington-Pace Offensive Lineman of the Year.

3: Iowa has won 15 straight games against non-conference opponents, including 12 regular season non-conference victories and three bowl wins. The nonconference win streak is the longest in the country. Iowa’s last nonconference loss was at the 2017 Outback Bowl (Florida, 30-3).

4: Iowa has three wins this season over ranked opponents (vs. #17 Indiana, 34-6; at #9 Iowa State, 27-17; vs. #4 Penn State, 23-20).

5: Iowa is playing for a trophy this week for the sixth time this season. The Hawkeyes are 3-2 in trophy games this season and 25-6 in their last 31 trophy games (includes bowl games and conference championship games).

6: Iowa leads the country with a school-record 24 interceptions and rank third nationally in takeaways (30). The Hawkeyes have 88 interceptions since 2017, more than any team in the country.

7: LB/DB Dane Belton leads the Big Ten and ties for second in the NCAA lead with five interceptions. DB Riley Moss has four interceptions and DBs Matt Hankins and Jermari Harris have three interceptions. Eleven different Hawkeyes have at least one interception this season. Iowa is plus-19 in turnover margin in its 10 wins and minus-five in its three losses.

8: LB Jack Campbell leads the Hawkeyes and ranks second in the Big Ten with 129 tackles. He is the first Hawkeye to record 100 tackles in a single season since Josey Jewell, who had 100+ tackles each year from 2015-17 (126, 124, 136). Campbell has four double-digit tackle performances (11, 18, 17, 16) this season.

9: WR Charlie Jones is the Rodgers-Dwight Big Ten return specialists of the year. Jones ranks second in the Big Ten averaging 7.8 yards on a league-high 36 punt returns. He has returned 23 kickoffs for an average of 26.3 yards per return, No. 2 in the Big Ten. He returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown Week 11 against Illinois. Jones’s 36 punt returns are the most by a Hawkeye in a single season since Andy Brodell returned 36 punts (10.6 average) in 2008. The school record for punt returns in a single season is 40 by Ramon Ochoa in 2003 (12.4 average).

10: TE Sam LaPorta leads Iowa in receptions (46) and receiving yards (548). The last Hawkeye tight end to lead the team in receptions and receiving yards was T.J. Hockenson in 2018 (49-760). LaPorta had a team-high 27 receptions in 2020.