The waiting game: With a 9 p.m. kickoff in the Central time zone, the Hawkeyes and Sooners had plenty of time to kill Friday.

Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops put his team through a walk-through, had some meetings and allowed them to watch bowl games.

He said a late start at this point in the season does not have the same impact as one during the regular season.

"You don't have another game coming at you," Stoops said. "You don't leave right after the game and walk into your house at 4 o'clock in the morning."

By the odds: According to the folks in Las Vegas, Iowa took the field Friday as a 14-point underdog in its game with Oklahoma.

The Hawkeyes entered play 7-1 against the spread in their past eight games when Iowa was at least a 10-point underdog.

0-for-Iowa: Former Hawkeye Jay Norvell, the receivers coach and co-offensive coordinator at Oklahoma, had plenty of reasons for personal motivation this week while preparing his team for Iowa.

Norvell entered Friday's game winless in seven games against the program he played for and began his coaching career with.

As an assistant, teams Norvell worked with went 0-4 vs. Iowa while he was at Wisconsin from 1989 to 1994 and 0-3 while at Iowa State form 1995 to 1997.

Bowl success: Iowa owns the best bowl record of any Big Ten program in the 10 bowl games the Hawkeyes have played under Ferentz over the past 11 seasons.

Iowa took the field Friday with a 6-3 record in those games.

Only two other conference programs, Penn State at 4-3 and Ohio State at 5-4 have better-than .500 records in bowls during that span.

He still loves it: Among the crowd at Thursday's Hawkeye Huddle was legendary Iowa broadcaster Jim Zabel.

The Davenport native recently celebrated his 90th birthday. Zabel sold copies of his book and chatted with fans who attended the event at the Phoenix Convention Center.

"I love it, I love it, I love it. There's nothing better than Hawkeyes in the Arizona sunshine in late December," Zabel said.

Plenty to play for: Stoops did not talk to his team much about his days at Iowa, preferring instead to focus the Sooners' thoughts on earning a 10th win on the season.

Oklahoma took the field Friday looking to reach 10 wins for the 33rd time in the program's history, more than any other FBS program in the country.

Keep away: Iowa didn't give Oklahoma's rapid-fire offense much of a chance to fire in the first quarter.

The Hawkeyes limited the Sooners to seven total yards on eight plays, including five on a pair of runs that followed an interception by Jamell Fleming that gave Oklahoma the ball on the 5-yard line.

Iowa owned an 11:53-3:07 edge in possession time in the opening quarter.

Full force: Iowa got an early, quick introduction to the problems Oklahoma quarterback Blake Bell can cause with his 6-foot-6, 245-pound frame.

Bell - nicknamed the Bell-dozer by Sooner fans - bulled his way into the end zone from the 4-yard line less than 5 minutes into the game after the Sooners took over at the Iowa 5-yard line following an interception.

The first of his two 4-yard touchdown runs by Bell in the first half marks the sixth straight game that the redshirt freshman has stepped in and rushed for a touchdown.

Catching on: Jordan Canzeri's 12-yard catch in the first quarter was the first of the freshman's Hawkeye career.

He went on to catch three balls for 15 yards in the opening two quarters.

Big foot: Oklahoma punter Tress Way equaled the longest punt in the Insight Bowl's 23-year history in the first quarter.

Way belted a 67-yarder from deep in the end zone, tying the record set by Travis Brown of Kansas State in 2001 against Syracuse.

The missing: As expected, Quinton Alston, Brad Herman and Ray Hamilton missed Friday's game because of injuries, joining Shane DiBona and Dakota Getz in watching the game in street clothes.

While Iowa officials have refused to identify the player they acknowledge was sent home for violating team rules, reserve strong safety Collin Sleeper was not on the sidelines Friday.

 

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