All of Chuck Long's passes didn't look pretty, but six of them had perfect endings.
"They were not always beautiful but they were right on target," Coach Hayden Fry said of Long's throws. "And a couple of the guys who caught them did a great job running with the ball after they got them."
Long connected with Bill Happel for three touchdowns and combined with Robert Smith on an 89-yard scoring play. That bettered the school record of 87 yards from Gary Snook to Craig Nourse against Minnesota in 1964.
Long, who entered the game as the second-best career passer in the Big Ten and 12th in NCAA history, finished the day with 19 completions in 26 attempts for 399 yards. He was intercepted once.
"The wind (14 m.p.h. from the southwest) was gusting, it was probably the worst I've ever played in while I've been at Iowa," Long said. "I overthrew some guys and I came up a little short on some others. But they found a way to get the ball.
"And once they're in the open, they don't get caught."
Northwestern Coach Dennis Green gambled with an eight-man defensive front and slowed Ronnie Harmon and the Iowa running game.
"We played against a team that was much more physical and we kept them honest as far as the running game," Green said.
"But the game is not who is the toughest kid on the block, it's football, and their passing game turned out to be a tough counterpunch."
The Hawkeyes (7-0, 4-0) were leading 7-3 early in the second quarter when Long got the rout under way by lobbing a screen pass to Harmon, who took it 44 yards for a touchdown.
Three minutes later, Long hooked up with Smith on the 89-yarder. After Iowa's Jay Norvell intercepted a pass, Long connected with Happel on a fly pattern up the left sideline for six more points.
Long came back with two more in the third period, and a four-yard scoring strike to Craig Clark in the fourth.
Northwestern (3-4, 1-3) scored with 2:02 left to play when Mike Greenfield threw a four-yard pass to Marc Bumgarner.