We knew going into Super Bowl LIV on Sunday that a pair of former Hawkeyes would emerge as first-time Super Bowl champions -- we just didn't know who that would be. After a stunning fourth quarter comeback by Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, now we know who those new Super Bowl champions are:
Congrats, Hitch and Niemann!
Anthony Hitchens finished with four tackles (one solo) and 0.5 tackles for loss, plus one QB hit. He definitely nailed Garoppolo on that QB hit.
Not all plays that help collect stats.— Seth Keysor (@RealMNchiefsfan) February 4, 2020
Very next down, 2nd and 9, Jones wins immediately and forces Kittle to help. This aids in him completely missing Hitchens, who gets a free run at Jimmy G for a big hit as he throws. pic.twitter.com/VVdwWe5MOQ
Critical play: 2nd-9, under 10 mins. Loaded box, and dummy count reveals Hitchens' blitz. Garoppolo checks run to a PA pass.— David DeChant (@DavidDeChant) February 4, 2020
Not sure if Mostert can cross to pick up Hitchens, but if so, he should. Kittle helping on Jones. Garoppolo not quick enough#49ers #Chiefs #SuperBowl pic.twitter.com/MPbODGyN24
Ben Niemann finished with two tackles (one solo) and one QB hit. Niemann also laid a big hit on Jimmy G.
Those plays were key in Kansas City's defense forcing San Francisco off the field and giving Mahomes and the offense the opportunity to put together a comeback. Great job, fellas.
The Niemann Family celebrating the Super Bowl Championship! We cannot express how excited we are for these Sycamore Spartans! #HailSycamore #ChiefsKingdom @Chiefs @HawkeyeFootball pic.twitter.com/5l6ncLKAaW— Sycamore Athletics (@SycoSpartans) February 3, 2020
On the other sideline, George Kittle finished with four catches for 36 yards. The highlight of Kittle's night might have been the introduction he got from The Rock at the beginning of the game.
He did have one impressive sliding catch:
George Kittle: best player in footballpic.twitter.com/NI6Ki8YaN1— PFF (@PFF) February 3, 2020
Though his performance in this game may be best remembered for a controversial offensive pass interference call that may have been technically correct, but is rarely enforced.
C.J. Beathard was inactive for the Super Bowl as the 49ers' third-string QB. Hopefully he and Kittle get future opportunities to make a Super Bowl.
Finally, since neither Kittle nor Hitchens nor Niemann scored a touchdown in the game, Tim Dwight remains the last Iowa player to score in a Super Bowl. In fact, Tim Dwight is the only former Hawkeye to score a point in a Super Bowl, as this exhaustive breakdown of Super Bowl point-scorers by their respective colleges shows:
Hello. Its time to argue about college football supremacy using the most sensible metric: which schools are responsible for the most point scored in Super Bowls. https://t.co/6641M3UhpE— Ryan Nanni (@celebrityhottub) February 4, 2020
Also: LOL BAMA
Congratulations again to Anthony Hitchens and Ben Niemann for becoming Super Bowl champions.