BOWLING GREEN, Ohio — During its bye week last Saturday, Indiana saw two Big Ten schools get upset by Mid-American Conference squads.
The Hoosiers were unable to prevent it from happening again.
"We played a really good football team on the road and didn't make a few plays and they did," Indiana coach Kevin Wilson said. "When you get in a close game there are a lot of chances."
Knapke, a redshirt sophomore making his second career start, set school records for attempts (73) and completed passes (46) as he threw for 395 yards and three touchdowns. Lewis, a freshman, finished with 16 receptions for 140 yards and a touchdown for Bowling Green (2-1).
"I think the players and the team had some juice stolen from them early in the season. And we got a little bit of that back," Bowling Green head coach Dino Babers said.
Indiana took a 42-39 lead with 2:04 remaining on a 1-yard run by quarterback Nate Sudfeld on a fourth down play.
The Falcons then moved 88 yards in 12 plays for the winning score. The PAT was blocked after the Falcons' touchdown. Indiana had one final chance, but Bowling Green's James Sanford knocked down Sudfeld's pass inside the 5-yard line.
"Coming out of the second half we knew we had to score points. We took it upon ourselves and it came out pretty well," Knapke said. "The receivers were getting open, I just had to get them the ball. . That last drive we finally put it all together."
Sudfeld was 31-of-41 for 347 yards and a touchdown for Indiana (1-1). Tevin Coleman rushed for 190 yards and three touchdowns.
"What I was trying to let them know at halftime was you only get so many opportunities like this in life and you have to fight, you have to claw, you have to hold on. You've got to lose finger nails and jerseys. You've got to find a way to make this happen," Babers said. "When everybody is rallying like that, nobody cares who gets the credit."
The teams combined for 61 points in the second half, trading touchdowns the entire half.
In the third quarter, Knapke threw a 40-yard scoring pass to Ronnie Moore and Travis Greene scored on a 5-yard run. Indiana's Tevin Coleman scored twice in the third quarter on runs of 5 and 46 yards.
Coleman's 46-yard scoring run with 2:51 left in the third quarter gave Indiana a 28-26 lead.
Fred Coppet scored on a 1-yard run for the Falcons just 52 seconds into the fourth quarter, but the 2-point conversion pass failed and BG held a 32-28 lead.
Indiana responded with a quick four-play drive with Coleman scoring on a 31-yard run to push the Hoosiers ahead 35-32.
"It was big. It was huge, it really was," Babers said about the fumble.
The Falcons then drove 88 yards for a score on a 31-yard pass from Knapke to Ryan Burbrink. With the PAT kick, Bowling Green held a 39-35 lead with 5:24 remaining.
After the Hoosiers regained the lead, the Falcons responded with the game-winning drive, helped by a pair of pass interference penalties on Indiana. The second penalty put the ball at the 2.
"We didn't play a couple of balls well," IU's Wilson said about BG's final drive. "I thought the (pass interference) calls were proper calls; I had no issues."
Greene finished with 123 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries for the Falcons.
It was Bowling Green's first win over a Big Ten team since the Falcons defeated Minnesota in overtime to open the 2007 season.