Quarterback Tayven Jackson found an open DeQuece Carter for a two-point conversion in the fourth overtime as Indiana staved off an upset with a sloppy 29-27 victory over Akron on Saturday night in Bloomington, Ind.
The Hoosiers (2-2) won their fifth straight overtime game despite a rocky performance in which they were outgained in total yards 474-282.
Jackson’s clutch flip to Carter came just moments before the Indiana defense turned away Akron in the same situation when quarterback DJ Irons’ last-gasp pass fell incomplete.
Irons rushed 18 times for a game-high 141 yards and two touchdowns, including a 10-yard touchdown run that gave the Zips a short-lived 24-17 lead in the first overtime.
Akron (1-3) had a chance to win the game in regulation after marching 45 yards in 1:25, but kicker Dante Jackson missed a 32-yard field goal wide left as time expired.
Tayven Jackson, who connected on just 11 of 26 passes for 190 yards, one touchdown and an interception, found Cam Camper for a 12-yard score to knot the game at 24-all at the end of the first overtime.
Indiana took a three-point lead in the second overtime when Chris Freeman drilled a 39-yard field goal. Akron stayed alive on Dante Jackson’s 23-yard chip shot to tie it at 27.
Akron’s Lorenzo Lingard had 14 carries for 113 yards. His 71-yard touchdown burst with three and a half minutes remaining in the fourth quarter tied the game at 17-all.
Irons, who left the game in the third quarter but later returned, finished with 194 yards and two interceptions on 22-of-35 passing.
The Indiana defense registered three interceptions, including two by Louis Moore. He also ran back a 22-yard pick-six off Akron backup Jeff Undercuffler Jr. to provide Indiana with a 14-10 lead late in the third quarter.