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Maligned Hawkeye Shumpert comes up big

[ 0 ] November 9, 2013 |

West Lafayette, Ind. —  Iowa wide receiver Don Shumpert wasn’t having the greatest of seasons.

The senior lost his starting job to Tevaun Smith, and he’s struggled with a foot injury. But Shumpert played a significant role in Iowa’s 38-14 victory Saturday at Ross-Ade Stadium.

“We played good as a team, and I contributed,” Shumpert said. “I was happy to do that.”

Shumpert entered the game with five catches for 51 yards this season. He had two catches for 69 yards in Saturday’s victory. Both his catches came on touchdown drives.

But the most important play might have come on Iowa’s second drive of the third quarter. The Hawkeyes had a 14-7 lead, and had just dodged a bullet when Christian Kirksey recovered a fumble by Purdue’s Raheem Mosert at the Iowa 29.

On Iowa’s first play after the turnover, Jordan Canzeri fumbled after a gain of 16 yards. The ball was on the ground, and Shumpert pounced just in front of Purdue defenders.

Iowa went on to score a touchdown to take a 21-7 lead.

“That fumble recovery, that was pretty big,” Shumpert said. “That was probably my biggest play of the day.”

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz was pleased to see a senior step up on a day when his team recorded a sixth win, marking bowl eligibility.

“He made some heads-up plays, some good plays,” Ferentz said. “Shump is kind of a quiet guy. He just works hard every day. It was good to see him involved.”

Now Shumpert will end his career in a bowl game.

“It just feels good to help my team win,” he said.

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Category: Iowa Hawkeyes Football

About Rick Brown: Rick Brown covers men's basketball for The Des Moines Register and Hawk Central. He's married and the father of two. He also covers golf for the Register. View author profile.

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