Sophomore running back Jawan Jamison rushed for 131 yards and two touchdowns as Rutgers University defeated Iowa State University 27-13 in the second annual Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium in New York.
The Scarlet Knights’ defense held the Cyclones (6-7) scoreless for a 42-minute stretch from the first to fourth quarters as the team got its second win yesterday at the Bronx stadium this season in front of a crowd of 38,328.
“This is a defense that is going to hurt you on third down,” Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads said after the game. “But we had our opportunities and then failed to execute.”
The sixth-worst running team in college football’s top division this season, Rutgers (9-4) rushed for 173 yards for its fifth bowl victory since the school defeated Princeton 6-4 in the first intercollegiate football game in 1869.
It was the fourth college football game, and second postseason contest, held at the $1.5 billion home of the New York Yankees, which opened in 2009. Rutgers beat Army 27-12 on Nov. 12 in the venue’s first football game of the season.
More than 40,000 seats were sold for the game, with both schools selling out their allotment, Yankees President Randy Levine said in a news conference before the game. He said the bowl was expected to turn a profit for the second year in a row.
“For all the people who don’t believe that New York City is a college town, we have two years of evidence that it is,” Levine said. “There is no better place to have a bowl game than New York City this time of year.”
Rutgers, whose New Jersey campus is 47 miles from the stadium, took a 7-6 lead, its first of the game, with 12 minutes, 39 seconds remaining in the second quarter on a one-yard touchdown run by Jamison. The team added to the lead two minutes later on a 21-yard field goal by senior San San Te and never trailed again, winning as it had all year with defense.
The Scarlet Knights, who ranked 12th in the country in fewest points allowed per game (18.8) and yards allowed per game (311.5) during the regular season, held the Cyclones out of the end zone for the first 50 minutes while recording three sacks, two interceptions and returning a fumble inside the Iowa State 5-yard line. Iowa State took a 6-0 lead with 7:35 left in the first quarter and did not score again until 10:00 remaining in the contest.
Coming in, the Rutgers ground game was ranked 115th in college football’s 120-team top division with 91.5 yards per game. Behind Jamison, sophomore fullback Michael Burton and sophomore quarterback Chas Dodd, the Scarlet Knights rushed for almost twice that amount and held possession for 34:35.
Iowa State took a 3-0 lead less than two minutes into the game on a 40-yard field goal by Zach Guyer, who added a 45-yard field goal with 7:35 remaining in the first quarter -- the start of a 42:35 Iowa State scoring drought that ended with 10:00 left in the fourth quarter on a 20-yard touchdown run by junior running back Jeff Woody.
Sophomore quarterback Jared Barnett, who made the sixth start of his Cyclones career, was replaced in the second quarter by junior Steele Jantz. The Cyclones had 311 yards of total offense and were 2-of-13 on third-down conversions.
“The third down defense was outstanding” Rutgers’ head coach Greg Schiano said. “We took the ball away three times and didn’t give the ball away at all. That’s how we win.”
Iowa State dropped its final three games of the season after rallying from a 17-point deficit to beat then-No. 2 Oklahoma State 37-31 in double overtime on Oct. 18.
The original Yankee Stadium hosted 185 college football games in its 85-year history, including a 1946 game between Notre Dame and Navy that featured four Heisman Trophy winners -- Doc Blanchard, Glenn Davis, Johnny Lujack and Leon Hart.
Scarlet Knights junior wide receiver Mohamed Sanu, who finished the regular season with a school- and Big East-record 109 receptions, had six catches for 62 yards. Sanu has one more season of eligibility and has not yet announced his intention for next year.
Dodd was 10-for-17 for 176 yards and a touchdown in his eighth start of the season, including an 86-yard touchdown pass to sophomore receiver Brandon Coleman in the fourth quarter to end the scoring. Senior linebacker Khaseem Greene, who led the conference with 127 tackles and was named the Big East co-Defensive Player of the Year, left in the fourth quarter with an injury.
Following the game, Schiano dedicated the victory to Eric LeGrand, a Scarlet Knights defensive lineman who was paralyzed last year in a game against Army. The dedication was followed by a chant of “Eric, Eric,” from the crowd.
Rutgers has now won its last five bowl games, dating to 2006. The Scarlet Knights also won a bushel of Iowa sweet corn, offered by Ames Mayor Ann Campbell in a friendly wager between politicians in the two schools’ hometowns.
“That’s who we want to be,” Schiano said in a news conference after the game. “It’s Jamison’s running and the offensive line’s blocking. The players did a heck of a job with the plan and Jawan ran the ball the way that we asked him to.”
-- Editor: Rob Gloster, Nancy Kercheval.