Iowa sets up TD vs. Ohio State with wacky 'swinging gate' play on fourth down

Iowa has Ohio State on major upset alert, and a trick play helped it extend its lead in the third quarter.

That’s right. Iowa ran a trick play.

The usually conservative Hawkeyes, already leading the No. 6 Buckeyes 31-17, faced a fourth-and-3 at the OSU 20-yard line. Iowa came out with its special teams and looked like it would kick a field goal, before suddenly shifting to a strange formation.

(via ESPN)

Teams will sometimes shift to a so-called “swinging gate” formation like this. If the defense gives it a look it likes for a specific play, the offense will try to run a play to get a first down. It happens a lot on PATs.

But Iowa did not shift back. After a man went in motion, the ball was snapped to punter Colten Rastetter, who serves as the team’s holder. He looked like he would run right toward the player in motion, but at the last second tossed the ball downfield to Tyler Kluver — THE LONG SNAPPER!

(via ESPN)

Kluver could not keep his feet, but he did make the catch for a first down at the Ohio State 2-yard line. It went in the books as an 18-yard gain.

And on the very next play, Iowa quarterback Nathan Stanley threw a touchdown pass to T.J. Hockenson. It was his fourth touchdown pass of the game, and his second to Hockenson. It gave the Hawkeyes a 38-17 lead.

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Sam Cooper is a writer for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!