Defense on display when Iowa faces Rutgers

Do not expect a high-scoring shootout when Iowa meets Rutgers in both teams’ Big Ten opener Saturday at Piscataway, N.J.Not only do both teams rank top-10 nationally in total defense and top-25 in scoring defense, but both also have struggled to produce consistently on offense.The Hawkeyes (2-1) started the year by barely defeating FCS foe South Dakota State 7-3 with two safeties and a field goal rather than one touchdown. After falling to Iowa State 10-7, Iowa’s offense finally struck the right chord in last week’s 27-0 win over Nevada, as Kaleb Johnson ran for 103 yards and two touchdowns on just seven carries.Then there’s the Scarlet Knights (3-0), who dropped 66 points on FCS Wagner two weeks ago but squeaked by Temple 16-14 last Saturday without an offensive touchdown. Rutgers only managed 59 passing yards, instead winning with three field goals and a pick-6 by Shaquan Loyal.”Part of it was technical. Part of it was schematic … and part of it was cultural,” Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said of the offensive struggles. “So throw all three things together, and you had kind of a perfect storm. But we are moving. We are learning from it and we are moving forward and we need to because we have an opponent with as stout a defense as there is in the country.”Rutgers must cope with a Hawkeyes defense tied for second in FBS with 13 total points allowed, including just one touchdown. And Iowa — which ranks last among 131 FBS teams with 217.7 yards per game — now faces a Rutgers defense allowing 240.3 per game, 10th in the nation.