Was it ugly? Yep. It really was a game that both teams seemed to not want to win at various times. Was that the tipping point for Shawn Eichorst? Probably not, but it certainly didn't give Eichorst anything compelling to change his thoughts about Bo Pelini's program.
So just for the sake of completeness, let's give one final report card for a Bo Pelini coached Nebraska team.
QB: Tommy Armstrong battled through injury and lack of protection, which speaks a lot to his toughness, perseverance, and leadership. But completing only 12 of 27 passes speaks a lot to the issues that still exist with Armstrong's game. Take that touchdown pass to Kenny Bell, thrown into double coverage. How many of you were like me, yelling "OH NO!"..until Bell came down with the ball. Whomever the next coach is, there's some work here that needs to be done. Grade: C
I-Back: Nebraska's second half comeback was sparked by Ameer Abdullah's legs as he provided quite a spark when there wasn't any running room. It was interesting to see Imani Cross in early; not sure if that was an injury thing or a change-of-pace thing, because we didn't see him again. I thought he looked OK as well Grade: B
WR: Kenny Bell's senior day ended prematurely due to injury, but that didn't stop him from making three critical catches to win the game. I still don't believe that Nebraska's doing a good enough job getting the ball to De'Mornay Pierson-El. Fortunately, Iowa's punter did that. (Thanks, Kirk.) Whomever takes over the offense has quite a weapon to use moving forward. Grade: A-
OL: Givens Price started the game badly with a false start, then completely missing the snap call on another. Reminded me of Lydon Murtha out there, so it was off to the bench for third-teamer Matt Finnin. Then third-string center Paul Thurston had to be summoned into the game when Ryne Reeves injured his ankle. Two third-stringers help explain why the line was even more ineffective than they'd been recently. Doesn't excuse it, though. This is going to be a project for the next coaching staff. Grade: F
DL: Want a strength of the team? The defensive line was solid all game as Maliek Collins and Vincent Valentine were a force most of the afternoon. But the future doesn't look quite as bright as it seems almost assured now that Randy Gregory will head to the NFL in January. And will the next coaching staff fight to get Avery Moss accepted back in school? Grade: A
LB: Zaire Anderson played like a senior who anted to go out on the right note. Trevor Roach made a play or two as well. David Santos seemed to be out of place a lot, it seemed. Linebacker is a concern going into next season; how will Michael Rose-Ivey return? Grade: C-
Secondary: Iowa exploited Nebraska's inability to defend the perimeter early that Wisconsin and Minnesota exposed. It was great to see Nebraska finally figure it out as the game evolved, but the fact that it took three games probably factored into Eichorst's decision. Nate Gerry and Byerson Cockrell will be a nice nucleus for next year's secondary. Corners were a little suspect, though. Grade: C-
Kicking: Two missed field goals and the infamous buttpunt. The highlight of the kicking game was Sam Foltz forcing a fumble on a punt return. That elevates this grade to a D-.
Overall: C- It was a win, but not a very good one.
Elsewhere in College Football
UCLA: F Jim Mora's team just can't handle success.The epitome of manic depressive football.
Devin Gardner: A+ Came up big in his college finale, and showed a helluva lot of class in consoling Ohio State quarterback J. T. Barrett.
Minnesota: B- Gave the Badgers quite a scare. Pretty good for a team picked to finish tenth.