Up 31-7, after a punt from each team to start the third quarter, Michigan State dug into its old bag of tricks again.
On the first play of their second possession of the half, wide receiver Keshawn Martin completed a pass to Brian Linthicum for 28 yards to the Iowa 33 yard line. Then, on fourth-and-two at the Iowa 25, the Spartans ran a fake field goal run by the holder, Brad Sonntag, which they of course converted. Despite the successful fake, MSU couldn't pick up another first down and wound up kicking a 33 yard field goal to make it 34-7. Kirk Cousins was 0-for-2 passing on the drive, one less completion than his wide receiver Martin.
Iowa answered the three with seven of their own, thanks in large part to a 61 yard return by Jordan Bernstine on the ensuing kickoff. Iowa was stopped at the MSU three yard line, but the Hawkeyes went for it on fourth-and-goal and completed a score to Marvin McNutt to make it 34-14 Spartans with under six minutes left in the third quarter.
After holding the Spartans to a three-and-out, Iowa scored again to make it a football game. Marcus Coker, who has been relatively quiet today (19 carries, 51 yards) scored from two yards out to make it 34-21.
That's where we stand going into the fourth quarter, MSU holding on to the football.