Iowa State looks to clinch the Big 12 regular season title with a win against West Virginia this afternoon. The Mountaineers are 5-3, and sit at 5th place in the conference. They have done a pretty good job of taking care of the ball and present a balanced attack on the offensive side of the ball, with a solid QB in Jarret Dodge and a solid running back room. Their defense has shown to be shaky, especially on the the side of run defense. Breece Hall had his breakout game in Morgantown last year, and looks to continue his campaign as one of the best in the country this year. Brock Purdy has continued to get better as the season continues on, and Cyclone fans would like to see more of the same today.
After a back and forth game, Iowa State scored a go-ahead Breece Hall rushing TD to take the lead and hold on against Texas. This win nearly cements Iowa State in the Big 12 Championship game, their first appearance in the game. They will also look to win the conference championship game and become winners of the conference for the first time in 108 years. Before this huge game, however, they will take on West Virginia next week.
Iowa State seemed to struggle to run the ball, something they have done pretty well throughout the season, but the line and Hall came together and did what they needed to do on the final drive. Kolar came alive in this historic game as well, and had well over 100 receiving yards, which propelled the Cyclones offensively in a game where leading receiver Xavier Hutchinson was held in check by the Texas Defense. Tarique Milton back also added to Iowa State's offensive production.
On the defensive side of the ball, the secondary played amazing and did well to stick with the Texas receivers. However, other than Latrell Bankston who came up clutch many times, they struggled to get pressure and contain the Texas passing game. Iowa State will look to improve on that going into their matchup next week with West Virginia.
Heres a quick game recap:
Kansas State travels to Ames for a huge Big 12 matchup, with huge conference title game implications on the line. The wildcats have lost starting QB Skylar Thompson for the year, and Will Howard will get the start for the Wildcats. This is huge for the Cyclones, as forcing Howard into mistakes will be huge for the Cyclones and will hopefully help the Iowa State secondary in the future. With Iowa State's solid run defense and KSU's rushing attack, this seems to be a good matchup for the Cyclones. Limiting Brock's mistakes will be huge again this week, as well as keeping Breece Hall in tremendous form. The running back is one of the top Heisman candidates this season. #BreeceforHeisman
Former Cyclone Tyrese Haliburton was drafted with the 12th pick in the 2020 NBA Draft on Wednesday, The Sacramento Kings took the point guard to pair up with star De'Aaron Fox in the backcourt. Tyrese joins a young NBA squad and looks to grow with the Kings. He slipped a little from what draft boards projected, but it was still good to see Tyrese stay in the lottery picks and get a solid opportunity in Sacramento.
Check out the video of Tyrese getting drafted:
Athlete Malik Verdon has committed to Iowa State from Hamilton High School in Hamilton, Ohio. After originally committing to Miami (OH), he has switched his commitment and chosen the Cyclones. He chose Iowa State over major schools that include Florida, Iowa, West Virginia and Washington State. The class of 2021 Commit stands at 6 foot 3, and is ranked in the top 1200 players in the nation by 247 Sports. He is also ranked as a top 50 recruit in his state of Ohio. He shows great athleticism and will be interesting to see what Campbell and staff chooses to do with Verdon.
#17th ranked Iowa State edged one win Baylor by a score of 38-31. While this game was filled with Cyclone Mistakes, they were able to put it all together a come out with a win. After the win, they stayed at #17 in the AP Poll.
Heres a one minute game recap video:
Brock Purdy threw 3 picks early in the game, but settled down later in the game. It is weird to see the ball not handed to Breece earlier in the game, especially after multiple picks were thrown. The defense also looked shaky to start the game, but tightened up and got the job done. Special teams continues to prove to be an issue as we saw with the muffed punt.
4-2 Iowa State takes on 1-3 Baylor on Saturday night at 6 PM (CT). The Cyclones are coming off a blowout win against Kansas and look to keep the momentum and move up in the ranking as the #17 team in the country. Listen to the podcast:
What to Watch for: Secondary and Overall Improvement
With a Baylor pass heavy attack, Iowa State's secondary will get tested once again. They have continued to improve each week, and we have seen the emergence of a star in Isheem Young. The whole team will look to improve as they have huge tests upcoming after their bye as they will see both Texas and Kansas State, both towards the top of the Big 12.
FInding a Running Game
Charlie Brewer has had success throwing the ball for the Bears, however a run game has not come to surface. Baylor does not have a running back over 200 yards yet this season and will need to keep a balanced attack against a talented Cyclone defense. John Lovett leads them in carries with 36, tallying 125 yards on those carries.
Iowa State started fast, before showing some weaknesses in the special teams game. However, they quickly bounced back and dismantled Kansas. Heres the Recap:
Breece Hall had a huge game, and puts himself in the Heisman conversation. Purdy also found Kolar and Hutchinson for TDs as the pass game continues to come together. A late TD from Dekkers to Scates showed the future of Iowa State football. The play calling contined to be skeptical at times, and special teams continues to be an issue, however, it looks like Campbell has his team headed in the right direction.
Iowa State, who takes the top spot in the Big 12, and the number 17 spot in the AP Poll, turns to Baylor next week before their bye.
Purchase, from, Cherry Creek High School in Englewood, CO, has committed to the Cyclones. The class of 2021 Cornerback has offers and interest from any major schools including Kansas State, Colorado State, Kansas among others. The three star recruit is the 142nd ranked CB in his class along with the 18th best player from Colorado. He stands at 5-11 and weights 170, a solid size for a DB.
He committed to Matt Campbell and the Cyclones Saturday Night:
Iowa State comes in off a heart breaking loss to #6 Oklahoma State. The Cyclones were plagued by mistakes in that loss, and look to fix some of those against sub par Kansas early on Saturday. Iowa State has both Kansas and Baylor ahead before their bye leading to tougher games in Kansas State and Texas.
Finding Brock Purdy another Receiver:
With Purdy mainly throwing to Hutchinson and the two tight ends, another receiver must emerge for the Cyclones. Joe Scates has shown promise along with last year's red zone target, Sean Shaw Jr. Teams are able to sit on the Cyclones main receivers, making it hard to convert on these 3rd downs. The rough offensive line also contributes to this, with the lack of time to throw for Purdy.
No Pooka Williams Jr.
Kansas running back Pooka Williams Jr. has opted out of the season due to health concers which means Kansas number one weapon and best player will not be on the field. This is huge news for the Cyclones as Pooka had a huge impact last year for the Jayhawks against the Cyclones.