Illini Bounce Back Against Hawkeyes

Rocky Harvey breaks the grip of Iowa's Roger Meyer and heads downfield Saturday against the Hawkeyes.
Rocky Harvey breaks the grip of Iowa's Roger Meyer and heads downfield Saturday against the Hawkeyes.

Oct. 14, 2000

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Associated Press Writer

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Kurt Kittner threw for 248 yards and three touchdowns as Illinois bounced back after two losses with a 31-0 victory over Iowa on Saturday.

The Illini (4-2, 1-2 Big Ten), who allowed 35 points to Michigan and 44 to Minnesota in its losses, dominated the Hawkeyes by forcing four turnovers and recording five sacks in posting their first shutout since 1995.

Two of Kittner's TD passes went to Aaron Moorehead, who had four catches for a career-high 125 yards.

Iowa (1-6, 1-2) did not have a good day a week after beating Michigan State for its first victory. Freshman Jon Beutjer threw two interceptions and fumbled once to set up three of Illinois' touchdowns. Ladell Betts ran for 115 yards for Iowa.

A missed field goal and failed fourth-down conversion killed Illinois' first two drives inside the Iowa 20.

But the Illini scored first in the second quarter on two Kittner passes to Brian Hodges. He caught a 21-yarder at the Iowa 1 and, two plays later, caught another in the end zone.

Robert Franklin intercepted Beutjer near midfield and Kittner hit Moorehead on a 61-yard TD pass. Moorehead was waiting for the ball 20 yards behind the nearest Iowa defender.

After getting the ball near midfield because of an Illinois fumble, Beutjer was sacked and fumbled. Kittner found Moorehead again on a 23-yard touchdown pass to put the Illini up 21-0.

Iowa's Nate Keading missed a 28-yard field goal with 1 second left in the half.

On their first drive of the second half, the Hawkeyes drove to the Illinois 2, but lost 18 yards on three downs before botching a fake field goal attempt on fourth-and-goal from the 20.

Fitts added a 30-yard field goal and linebacker Mondrian Long intercepted Beutjer and returned it 75 yards for a TD midway through the fourth quarter.