Iowa Football: Duzey to Miss Rose Bowl with Knee Injury


Heading into the Rose Bowl, it is hard to imagine anything could dampen the excitement for Iowa as it prepares to play in the famed bowl for the first time since 1991. However, the unexpected announcement that TE Jake Duzey would miss the Rose Bowl after reinjuring his knee was unwelcome news to the Hawkeyes.

When Kirk Ferentz hinted at an offensive injury to be announced this week, immediate thoughts had to go to the persistent injuries of C.J. Beathard and Tevaun Smith. Losing a player like Duzey, while having a disappointing season, is less than ideal against a Stanford team where having as many options as possible could be a difference maker.

That being said, what does this mean for Iowa on Friday? Well, in the grand scheme of things, the Hawkeyes should not suffer too bad of a setback on offense. Duzey missed the first four games of the season after initially injuring his knee in the spring. While he was active for Iowa’s remaining nine games, he was unable to get himself on the stat sheet.

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His absence paved the way for a big year for George Kittle (290 yards, 6 TDs) who had the game-winning score against Wisconsin and got the scoring started against Nebraska. Henry Kreiger-Coble also put together a solid season (385 yards, 1 TD) in a year where Beathard relied heavily on his tight ends to fill the void for the often injured Tevaun Smith.

These two should be expected to continue their solid production and will be a key for Iowa to end the season with a victory.

For Duzey, 2015 was an all-around disappointment for what will end up being his final year as a Hawkeye. He ended 2014 with the most receptions by a tight end in the Big Ten and after seeing what Beathard was able to do with Kreiger-Coble and Kittle, it is hard not to imagine that the offense could have been even more potent with a healthy Duzey.

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Duzey will end his Iowa career with 58 receptions, 678 yards, and 5 touchdowns with his most memorable game coming in 2013 against Ohio State.