INDIANAPOLIS — L.J. Scott kept lunging forward, stretching the ball over the goal line for a touchdown with 27 seconds and No. 5 Michigan State all but locked up a spot in the College Football Playoff, edging No. 4 Iowa 16-13 Saturday in the Big Ten championship game.
Connor Cook led the Spartans (12-1) on a 22-play drive that set up Scott’s 1-yard run. A half-dozen Iowa defenders tried to stop Scott, but he wouldn’t be denied.
Iowa (12-1) lost for the first time this season — and just barely.
Five times in the final 2 minutes, the Spartans snapped the ball from the Iowa 5-yard line or closer. Finally, after getting bottled up by three defenders on third-and-goal from 1, Scott broke free just long enough to get the ball across the goal line for Michigan State’s only TD.
The 82-yard march wiped out Iowa’s 13-9 lead, which it got on an 85-yard pass from C.J. Beathard to Tevaun Smith.