Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers Head-to-Head Game History: Not Even Close

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By Will Cummings

The recent decision by the Big Ten brass to place the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Nebraska Cornhuskers in the same division was a move made in heaven for football fans around these parts of the country. Having spent time in both Nebraska and Iowa, there is no mystery—based on my observations–that Iowa and Nebraska football fans are not particularly fond of one another: In general, Iowans seem to think that the Husker fans are full of themselves and living on past glory, while the Husker fans outright dismiss Iowa football as being of any significance in their eyes due to their futility in head-to-head competition against them and in collecting national championship hardware.

Iowa vs. Nebraska Football History Since 1891

Historically, things have not gone well for Iowa football teams in their head-to-head contest against the Huskers: Nebraska leads the series with a record of 26-12-3. But the overwhelming majority of those games occurred prior to 1946. And the earliest of those meetings dates all the way back to 189l. That first battle was waged in Omaha, where Iowa walloped Nebraska 20-0. However, after the 1946 game–a 21-7 Iowa victory–the two teams did not meet up again until 1979, when Nebraska escaped from Iowa City with a close-fought 24-21 victory. The Hawkeyes and Huskers have only met five other times since ‘79. During that span, the Hawkeyes are a dismal 1-4 against their neighbors to the West. As illustrated in the table below–Iowa suffered severe beatings by Nebraska football teams:

Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers
Head-to-Head Game Record
(since 1979)
Year Nebraska pts. Iowa pts. Location
1979 Nebraska 24 Iowa 21 Iowa City
1980 Nebraska 57 Iowa   0 Lincoln
1981 Nebraska   7 Iowa 10 Iowa City
1982 Nebraska 42 Iowa   7 Lincoln
1999 Nebraska 42 Iowa   7 Iowa City
2000 Nebraska 42 Iowa 13 Lincoln

So there you have it.

Based on the record between the two football teams, Nebraska fans have every reason to be dismissive towards Iowa Hawkeyes football. As for the Hawkeyes fans, perhaps they are suffering more from an inferiority complex and a touch of envy when it comes to their feeling about the Huskers. Sure, Husker fans may be full of themselves—but don’t they have every right to be?

Nebraska’s 5 National Championship TrophiesNebraska's 5 National Championship Trophies. Overall Record vs. Iowa 26-13-3. Since 1979 5-1 with average margin of victory 31 points.


The above data appearing  in this article was collected from the College Football Data Warehouse.

Latest Nebraska vs. Iowa article: Who has Best Chance to win 2011 Big Ten Championship?


Related Links:
Iowa Hawkeyes vs Nebraska Cornhuskers: Who Has the Best Football Program in the Neighborhood?

Iowa Hawkeyes VS. Nebraska Huskers: Which Team Will Have Best Record in 2010?

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  1. I WAS WRONG says

    I always knew Iowa football sucks. After seeing thi to the point artcle I realize I was wrong. Now I know they REALlY, REALY SUCK ASS!

  2. You can't spell says

    At least Iowa fans can spell. Really has two “l”s. FYI.

  3. I Was Wrong says

    Hey you can spel

    I do not spel very wel because I was born and raized in Iowa. The school system thar sucks just like Iowa footbal.
    Get redy for a yerly but kicken by the Huskers. Glad I moved to Nebraska, maybe thar is hope for me now. The onle hope for Iowa footbal is if they get out the big ten as sune as posibl and move to a d2 lege.

    Man this Iowa educashin is kiling me.

  4. HawkeyeFan says

    Based on the way the Pelini brothers behave on the sidelines and around random photographers, I’m really not looking forward to Nebraska joining the Big Ten. Hopefully their fans don’t all behave like their coaches or like the fans posting here. Big Ten teams have class and mutual respect, our coaches don’t have temper tantrums when things don’t go 100% their way.

  5. Ronniehuskerron says

    This should be a lot of fun to play Iowa versus Nebraska every year, especially as a Thanksgiving weekend event. For those NU fans who haven’t been to Nile Kinnick Stadium, I highly recommend it -- it’s a terrific place to be on a fall afternoon during college football season. I’m sure there will be a fair amount of fans from both Iowa and Nebraska that will do their utmost to prove how much of a knucklehead they are and why the other team ‘sucks’ or similar. Apparently, some folks just thrive on that kind of nonsense.

    Hopefully, most of us can enjoy what should develop into a very nice rivalry over time. Both programs have things they can brag about, but really, who cares? Iowans and Nebraskans have much more in common than they what differentiates them.

    What will be fun is to play it out, on the field, and let the action and the effort speak for itself.

    So -- for 2011, good luck my Iowa friends, I hope you have a great season. In fact, I sincerely hope you go 11-1.

  6. Don't Buy the NU Hype says

    I will enjoy watching Nebraska get their ass kicked by the Hawks this year. Nebraska will not be that good this year especially in conference play. Just watch!

    I’m telling you now that the sports guys got this Nebraska thing all wrong because they’re in love with Pelini and Nebraka’s past glory.

    I give the Hawks a much better shot at winning the 2011 division title because of their easier schedule and their proven conference performance over the past ten years.

    A lot will be riding on the outcome of the Nebraska Iowa game: that is whether Nebraska will finish the regular season with a winning conference record or Iowa wins the division title.

  7. Cornhuskers 814-Hawkeyes 41 says

    the Hawkeyes may go 11-1 this year but that 1 loss will be to Cornhuskers who will go 12-0 13-0 with the Big Ten Championship,then 14-0 with the National Championship…

  8. JB says

    It’s all about what have you done for me lately Jack……who cares about the past. If you want to live in the past, Iowa has been a better program the last 10 years. They are second only to Ohio State in the Big 10 in overall record and have a 6-3 bowl record under him (including shutting down that wonderful 1950’s option offense in the Orange Bowl). I’m not going to say who is going to win the game this year because who really knows? It’s at Memorial Stadium, but, Iowa has been a decent road team under KF. They are both middle of the road teams…..It’s a toss up who’s going to win.

  9. Iowa Football Sucks says

    Huskers are going to smoke that dirty Hawkeye bird until the flesh falls off its bones and their fans bow down to worship the BIG RED “N”! Score: 54 -7 and Iowa fails to make a bowl appearance for the 2011 season.

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