Countdown to probably the most thrilling 2021 soccer video games in Iowa: No. 12 Kent State

Golden lightning bolts in the state of Kent

This is the first in a 12-part series featuring Iowa’s most exciting soccer games.

Of course we start with number 12.

September 18: Kent Stateent

In all honesty, I’m not sure if a team that surrendered 70 points to a Mid-American Conference brother is ready to go to Kinnick Stadium and play a good Big Ten team.

Those feelings will solidify or change two weeks earlier when the Kent State Golden Flashes play at Texas A&M.

Then look at the history between Kent State and Iowa and see that the Hawkeyes won the previous two meetings with a combined score of 90-7.

But the main reason this game will have relatively little interest is its place on the board. It’s not a season opener, with the enthusiasm that comes with it. Rather, it’s Game 3, the Saturday after Iowa plays in Iowa State and two weeks after Iowa started at home against Indiana.

Win or lose in Ames, there will be a hangover effect for fans and media. It remains to be seen whether this will be carried over to the team itself.

Is Kent State a lousy team, as it has been so often in the past? Let’s say 2013 to 2018 when the overall record was 16-55? No not at all.

Under fourth-year coach Sean Lewis, one of the few bearded major football head coaches – and he’s a fine beard – the Flashes won their last four games in 2019, including a 51:41 triumph over the state of Utah in the Frisco Bowl .

Do you remember the game My face is red because I don’t. Maybe I should have used the bowl’s full name, the Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl.

Maybe I shouldn’t have done that.

Jordan Love, now the heir to Aaron Rodgers as quarterback for the Green Bay Packers, was Utah’s QB that night in Frisco, Texas. Or that day. I don’t know when they left.

Love completed 30 of 39 passes for 317 yards and three touchdowns, with one interception. He wasn’t the best player in his position in that game.

Kent State’s Dustin Crum made 21 of 26 passes for two TDs without a pick, and he rushed for 147 yards and a touchdown that secured the win. He is the only Kent State quarterback to win a bowl game.

Crum completed 73.5 percent of his passes last season and his team averaged 49.8 points per game. It played four games, won three. The final was a 70-41 loss at Buffalo, where the Flashes allowed 515 yards. Ouch!

Crum has a total of 35 touchdown passes and six interceptions in his career. That’s six interceptions over 483 pass attempts. That is pretty good. He also rushed for 240 yards 44 times, which is 5.5 yards per carry. That is pretty good.

As I type this, I am slowly warming up to this game. Wait a minute, I was just reading again how to allow Buffalo 70 points and 515 yards in Kent State’s most recent game. Never mind.

Questions raised: Doesn’t it seem right that a team named “Buffalo” can run well? And isn’t Dustin Crum a great name?

Kent State averaged 607 yards per game last season – that’s right, 607 – as the first in the nation. Know that the Flashes only played four games, all against MAC teams. The last game against a major conference team was a 48-0 loss to Wisconsin in 2019, followed by a 55:16 loss at Auburn and a 30-7 loss at Arizona State …

Look, someone had to be number 12 on this list. Kent State won’t mind. This game is about money, not fame. If it can keep up, so much the better.

Favorite Names on Kent State’s List:

Wide receiver Ja’Shaun Poke (who averaged 81.5 yards per game last year)

Wide receiver Dante Cephas

Linebacker Mandela Lawrence-Burke

Cornerback Elvis Hines

Defensive end Reigns Awah

I’m sorry for Kent State, but this is what still comes to mind when I hear the name of the school:

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