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Iowa hosts Western Michigan after a thrilling CyHawk Victory

The Iowa Hawkeyes are back in Kinnick after a 20-13 victory over rival Iowa State.

This week, they welcome in 1-1 Western Michigan out of the MAC. Western Michigan is coming off a 7-48 thrashing against Syracuse, in a game they quite frankly never had a shot in.

Western Michigan is led by QB Jack Salopek. Salopek is a Sophomore out of Irwin, PA, who started 7 games in 2022 for the Broncos.

Salopek has started both games for the Broncos this season, passing for 280 yards, 1 TD, and 2 interceptions. Salopek had a solid outing in Week 1 against St Francis PA, passing for 170 yards, 1 TD and 1 interception.

Salopek isn’t much of a runner, but he can be if he needs too. Last week against Syracuse, he ran 7 times for 36 yards.

In the running game, the Broncos are led by (RS) Freshman Jalen Buckley. Buckley so far this season has ran 38 times for 281 yards and 2 TDs, with an average of 7.4 yards per carry.

Buckley is the guy on this Western Michigan offense. Against Syracuse last week, he ran 8 times for 87 yards and 1 TD. He’s an explosive back that can break off a big run at any given time. He’s broken off a run of at least 68 yards in both games this season, including a 75 yard run last week. Buckley is not a threat at all in the passing game, so you really just need to focus on him in the backfield.

The Broncos top pass catcher is sophomore receiver Kenneth Womack. After 3 seasons at Sacred Heart, Womack transferred to Western Michigan this season. So far this year, Womack has caught 8 passes for 121 yards. His career high for yards in a season is 709 last year.

Defensively, this Western Michigan squad doesn’t impress me very much. They let up 48 against Syracuse, and haven’t forced a turnover in the first 2 games. They have managed to get 5 sacks this season, but only 2 of them came last week against the Orange.

Thoughts and Prediction:

This is a game that I think the Hawkeye offense can finally put up some points. I say that, but knowing the Hawkeyes, I’m not going to get my hopes up. In all seriousness, I do think the running game gets going against the Broncos and Iowa wins 34-10.

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