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.The Hawkeyes (3-1) will look to re-assert

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    January 25, 2019 6:18 AM GMT

    IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Over the past two games, Iowa has looked nothing like the team that dominated the Big Ten West in 2015. Max Kepler Jersey .The Hawkeyes (3-1) will look to re-assert themselves Saturday against Northwestern (1-3), but the loss of star wide receiver Matt VandeBerg wont be easy to overcome.VandeBerg is out indefinitely after injuring his right foot Monday in practice. VandeBerg, a senior, is the teams leader in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns.Iowas offense hasnt been all that great anyway over the last two weeks, so losing its top outside threat stings.This is hardly a crisis stage. Were all really sorry that Matt got hurt, dont get me wrong, Im not minimizing that, but hey, were going to play. Weve got to play, Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said.The Hawkeyes were even more banged up heading into last years game against the Wildcats and left Evanston with a 40-10 win , one of their signature victories in coach Kirk Ferentzs 18 seasons.Northwestern doesnt look nearly as strong as it was around this time last year either. The Wildcats have already lost to Western Michigan, Illinois State and Nebraska -- all at home -- and will make their road debut on Saturday.Here are some of the key things to watch for as Iowa prepares to host its West rival:WILDCAT THREATSNorthwestern has yet to score more than 24 points in a game. But the Wildcats have some dangerous weapons, including senior wide receiver Austin Carr. He leads the Big Ten with 28 catches for 392 yards -- and had eight grabs for 108 yards and a touchdown in last weeks 24-13 loss to Nebraska . Junior running back Justin Jackson is on pace to become the first back in school history with three straight 1,000-yard seasons, and quarterback Clayton Thorson completed a career-high 24 passes last week after setting a personal best with 320 yards the week before.DOING IT WITH DEFENSEThe Hawkeyes defense hasnt been the problem. Iowa is allowing just 13.5 points per game and has held its two Power Five opponents, Iowa State and Rutgers, to just 10 combined points. Im really impressed with how hard theyre playing. Its Iowa. They do what they do and they do it well, Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said.ROAD TRIPThe most disappointing thing about Northwesterns surprisingly poor start is that all three of its losses came at Ryan Field. But the Wildcats were tough on the road in 2015, winning at Nebraska, Wisconsin and Duke.This will definitely be a great challenge and a huge first test ... youre not going to play in a tougher environment than Kinnick Stadium, Fitzgerald said.FUNKY SERIESThe common thread for this series is that, more often than not in recent years, the results were unexpected. Few thought Iowa would beat Northwestern by 30 points last year or 48-7 in Iowa City in 2014. But the Wildcats ended Iowas national title hopes by knocking out quarterback Ricky Stanzi in the first quarter of a 17-10 win in 2009, and they took the Hawkeyes out of Big Ten title contention with a 21-17 win in 2010.NOTABLESIowa once took 21 consecutive games from Northwestern prior to a Wildcats win in 1995, the year they went to the Rose Bowl. Northwestern is 10-9 against the Hawkeyes since then. ... Iowa running back Akrum Wadley has rushed for 310 yards and five touchdowns in just two games against the Wildcats. ... Northwestern and Iowa are averaging nearly identical yards per game, but the Hawkeyes are averaging 30.5 points while the Wildcats are at just 16.2---Online: Ervin Santana Jersey .com) - The Montreal Canadiens will try to halt their longest losing streak of the season when they host the struggling New York Islanders in tonights clash at the Bell Centre. Kirby Puckett Jersey . They hope to persuade the other team owners and commissioner Roger Goodell to put pressure on Redskins owner Daniel Snyder to drop the nickname they find offensive. "Given the way the meeting transpired," Ray Halbritter, an Oneida representative and leader of the "Change the Mascot Campaign," said Wednesday, "it became somewhat evident they were defending the continued use of the name. . A forerunning sled crashed into the worker Thursday at the Sanki Sliding Center. The unidentified worker broke both legs and was airlifted to a nearby hospital. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (6-10)OPEN CAMP: July 28, Tampa, FloridaLAST YEAR: Missed playoffs for eighth consecutive season, despite making strides on offense with 2015 No. 1 overall draft pick Jameis Winston throwing for 4,042 yards, 22 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Tripled victory total from previous year, but not enough to save job of coach Lovie Smith, who led team to 6-6 start before losing final four games. Ranked in top 10 offensively and defensively in same season for first time. But cycle of losing didnt stop because team finished 20th in points scored and 26th in points allowed.IMPORTANT ADDITIONS: Rookies CB Vernon Hargreaves III, DE Noah Spence, K Roberto Aguayo; CB Brent Grimes, DE Robert Ayers, Jr., LB Daryl Smith, G J.R. Sweezy.IMPORTANT LOSSES: G Logan Mankins, LBs Danny Lansanah and Bruce Carter, CB Sterling Moore, K Connor Barth.CAMP NEEDS: With Lovie Smith out as coach, Bucs head in new ddirection on defense with Mike Smith, ex-Falcons head coach, taking over as coordinator. Bartolo Colon Jersey. Figure to have at least three -- maybe four -- new starters on that side of ball, so installing new scheme and getting offseason acquisitions acclimated will be major priority.EXPECTATIONS: Dirk Koetter was promoted from OC to coach, largely because of relationship with Winston and prospect of continued growth offensively. But unless defense takes significant steps forward, its difficult to envision playoff berth on horizon. And if long, frustrating postseason drought continues? Ownership has changed coaches four times since 2008, and past two choices -- Smith and Greg Schiano -only got two seasons to get it right.---AP NFL website: and Wholesale NFL Jerseys Wholesale Nike NFL Jerseys NFL Jerseys From China Cheap Nike Basketball Jerseys Wholesale Hockey Jerseys China Nike Baseball Jerseys Cheap College Jerseys China Cheap Football Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Canada Wholesale NHL Jerseys Canada Wholesale Nike MLB Jerseys Canada Cheap NBA Jerseys Authentic Canada Stitched Soccer Jerseys Canada Cheap Jerseys Canada NFL ' ' '