On this week's regional Sports Illustrated cover ...


The rest of the country is starting to come around on unbeaten Iowa.


Iowa is now ranked No. 3 in both major polls (AP and USA Today's Amway Coaches), and one would assume the Hawkeyes (11-0) will find a spot in the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings that are released Tuesday night. They are currently No. 5 in that ranking.

Beyond that, Iowa is featured on a regional cover of this week's Sports Illustrated. (If you are a believer in jinxes, that would be a bad thing.) Carolina quarterback Cam Newton is on the national cover.

The takeout by SI writer Albert Chen centers on teams like Iowa, Michigan State and Florida that are part of the College Football Playoff picture but not taken very seriously by national sports pundits, the magazine said in its release. The magazine comes out Wednesday.

Sports Illustrated said the following locations will get the edition featuring the regional cover of Iowa: Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota. (They may want to deliver a few hundred to Norman, Okla., for Iowa cover boy George Kittle's friends and family.)

The regional cover of Sports Illustrated, featuring the Iowa Hawkeyes.