Mark Weisman frustrated after Hawkeyes' pass-heavy loss

Rick Brown
Oct 18, 2014; College Park, MD, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Mark Weisman (45) reacts after his touchdown run against the Maryland Terrapins at Byrd Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Iowa's running game continues to be a work in progress, seven games into the season.

"This is on everybody," running back Mark Weisman said. "We just need to get better."

Weisman scored twice, his fourth straight two-touchdown game, and averaged 7.8 yards a carry.

But he got just 10 carries.

"You call the plays you think are best suited for the situation," Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said.

As a team, the Hawkeyes gained just 116 yards in 31 attempts.

Once Iowa got behind on the scoreboard, Iowa offensive coordinator Greg Davis went heavy on the passing game.

The 56 pass attempts were the most for quarterback Jake Rudock in his career, and the second-most for an Iowa quarterback under Ferentz. Scott Mullen threw it 60 times in a game against Indiana on Oct. 23, 1999. That shares the school attempts record established by Chuck Hartlieb against Indiana on Oct. 29, 1988.

Weisman scored his second touchdown on a 2-yard run late in the third quarter. He set that up with a 38-yard run on the previous play.

After Iowa held Maryland's offense to a three-and-out, Weisman gained 8 yards on back-to-back carries on the Hawkeyes' next drive. But on the first play of the fourth quarter from the Maryland 44, Rudock's pass to Ray Hamilton was incomplete.

When Rudock was picked off by Maryland's William Likely, who returned it for a touchdown on Iowa's ensuing possession, the 31-21 deficit put the ground game in mothballs.

Ferentz said that Weisman will continue to be an important part of the offense moving forward.

"The last several weeks, he's been one of the bright spots on our football team," Ferentz said. "I'm glad he's on our team."

Weisman said a lack of execution is what is holding the running game back.

"Someone has got to give us a spark, and make a play, and no one did," Weisman said. "It's something we've been missing this year."

This is the 10th consecutive game that Iowa has not had a 100-yard rusher. The last to do it was Jordan Canzeri against Purdue last season.

"We didn't play the way we wanted to," Weisman said. "We came out and started fast (up 14-0). That's about the only thing we did all day."