The 23rd Insight Bowl on Dec. 30 features pits the Iowa Hawkeyes of the Big Ten against the No. 14 Oklahoma Sooners of the Big 12. The Sooners will look for Landry Jones to lead them to a 10th victory in what could perhaps be his final collegiate start. Jones, though, hasn't decided if he will enter the 2012 NFL Draft; instead, he will wait until the Jan. 15 deadline to make his decision, which he told reporters during media day on Wednesday.
The Sooners would wind up with four losses should the Hawkeyes pull off the upset. It would be the team's most losses in a season the 2009 season when the Sooners had five. The Sooners had been on a path to the championship game and then just one of the regular BCS games after a loss to the Texas Tech Raiders and a late defeat at the hands of Robert Griffin III and the Baylor Bears. A third loss, to the Oklahoma St. Cowboys, guaranteed the Sooners a non-BCS bowl game.
The Hawkeyes enter the game with a 7-5 record and its last two losses to ranked teams (Penn State was not ranked when they defeated Iowa earlier in the season). For the Iowa players, they want to send defensive coordinator Norm Parker out as a winner. After 48 years, Parker is hanging up his headset and retiring from football. As linebacker Tyler Nielsen said earlier in the week (via the Waterloo-Cedar Fall Courier):
"It's important to the whole coaching staff, it's important to everybody involved with Iowa football to come out and have a strong performance in our last game with him as our coach," Nielsen said. "It gives us a little extra boost."
The Hawkeyes are no strangers to upsets this season, defeating the then No. 15 Michigan Wolverines on Nov. 5, 24-16.
In case anyone is attending the bowl game, there are already announcements about traffic conditions and rules in place (via the Arizona Republic).