LSU know your opponent: Mark Weisman and the Iowa running backs

Mark Weisman

Nov 2, 2013; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Mark Weisman (45) runs the football against the Wisconsin Badgers at Kinnick Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Iowa will bring their run first style offense to Tampa on New Year’s day for their Outback bowl matchup with the LSU Tigers. The Hawkeye’s rushing attack is led by junior fullback Mark Weisman. Weisman leads the team in practically all the important rushing statistics. Iowa also uses running backs Damon Bullock and Jordan Canzeri regularly.

Canzeri didn’t see the field much at the beginning of the season, but he took advantage of an increase in snaps late in the year to become arguably Iowa’s most dangerous running back. In the last four games Canzeri has carried the ball 43 times for 332 yards, nearly 8 yards a carry. He had a monstrous game against Purdue gaining 165 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries. Canzeri’s 6.7 yards a carry is a team best.

Bullock is yet to have a truly spectacular game this year but was a consistent back early in the season. Bullock is second on the team in both rushing yards and carries but his snap count has dropped dramatically recently since Canzeri has been playing so well. In three of his last four games Bullock was held to 12 or fewer yards rushing.

Weisman is the work horse for this year’s Iowa team. He isn’t know for breaking off big runs but he consistently picks up tough yardage. The Hawkeyes call on him constantly as he is averaging more than 17 carries a game, including 35 rushing attempts against Iowa State. The fullback has had several huge performances this season including three games with at least 145 yards on the ground. When Weisman has carried the ball 11 or more times this season his team is 6-1. When he has had less than 11 carries Iowa  is just 2-3 on the year.

Look for Iowa to use Weisman and Canzeri early and often against a LSU defense that has not had much success stopping the run this season.


Topics: Damon Bullock, Football, Jordan Canzeri, LSU Tigers, Mark Weisman

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