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Iowa moves to 11-0; awaits final regular season challenge

Iowa moves to 11-0; awaits final regular season challenge

IOWA CITY (AP) — Purdue couldn't pull off the upset that would've shaken up the playoff race.

After quarterback David Blough left in the first half because of an apparent head injury, Austin Appleby threw for 259 yards Saturday in the Boilermakers' 40-20 loss to No. 6 Iowa.

C.J. Beathard tossed three touchdown passes as unbeaten Iowa clinched a share of the West title and a spot in the Big Ten championship game.

LeShun Daniels Jr. ran for two TDs for the Hawkeyes (11-0, 7-0 Big Ten, No. 5 CFP), who'll play at Nebraska next week in search of their first 12-0 regular season — just a year after finishing a disappointing 7-6.

Iowa let Purdue (2-9, 1-6) get within 20-13 in the third quarter. But Beathard's 22-yard TD pass to Henry Krieger-Coble with 8:40 left sealed yet another victory for the Hawkeyes.

There 'are situations when you're playing a good football team that you have to be right on point. Obviously, we didn't do that,' Purdue coach Darrell Hazell said.

Hazell said after the game that he's unsure of Blough's status. Purdue will play for the Old Oaken Bucket next week against Indiana.

The first winter storm of the season dumped roughly eight inches of snow on Iowa City overnight. The skies cleared by kickoff, but the temperatures remained in the low 20s with wind gusts that made it feel closer to zero degrees.

The conditions seemed ideal for the run-heavy, defensive-minded Hawkeyes.

But once again, it was Beathard who made the plays that helped keep Iowa unbeaten.

Daniels opened the scoring with a 2-yard TD. He then went 13 yards to give Iowa a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, and Beathard's 7-yard TD pass to Matt VandeBerg made it 20-0.

But Iowa went into a brief funk — and Purdue got going behind Appleby.

The Boilermakers closed to 20-13 by halftime on a 1-yard TD by Markell Jones and two short field goals by Paul Griggs.

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