Turnover calamities spell doom for Iowa State in Cy-Hawk game
AMES — Matt Campbell and the No. 9 Iowa State Cyclones still can’t get that Cy-Hawk win.
No. 10 Iowa forced four Iowa State turnovers and, despite gaining less than 200 yards of total offense, took home a comfortable 27-17 victory at Jack Trice Stadium Saturday evening to push their win streak to six in the rivalry.
The game got away from Iowa State in the second half with turnovers on three consecutive possessions, essentially gifting Iowa scoring opportunities to put the game out of reach.
After the game, Campbell fell on the sword, blaming himself for not guiding the Cyclones to a victory.
“Somewhere along the line I failed this team to be prepared for the moment,” Campbell said. “I think our lack of execution really falls on my shoulders. Whatever I have to do to get our team swung around, especially with the lack of efficiency on the offensive side of the football that’s been our last two games.
“That responsibility does not lie on the kids, it relies on the head football coach. Again, I’ll certainly take the blame for this one.”
On a balmy day (91 degree temperature at kickoff) and with College GameDay having taken place earlier Saturday from Ames, stakes were high for this edition of the in-state rivalry. For many, this felt like an opportunity for the Cyclones to usurp their rivals from Iowa City in the state’s pecking order.
The game was slow at the start, with both teams punting on their first two possessions. Iowa State took advantage of a missed Iowa field goal to drive down and take a 3-0 lead on a Connor Assalley field goal late in the first quarter.
After a Brock Purdy interception at midfield, Iowa drove down to take a 7-3 lead midway through the second quarter on a Tyler Goodson four-yard run. A Charlie Jones touchdown grab from 26 yards out gave Iowa a 14-3 lead with less than a minute left in the first half, but Iowa State drove quickly downfield and a Breece Hall short run put the score at 14-10 at halftime.
A key mistake from Breece Hall allowed the Hawkeyes to take a 21-10 lead on a short scoop-and-score in the third quarter. The next possession ended in an Iowa State interception and an Iowa field goal. The same thing happened on the next possession for the Cyclones, and early in the fourth quarter Iowa took a 27-10 lead with another field goal. Twenty of Iowa’s 27 points originated from Iowa State turnovers.
Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz said this was where the game broke open for the Hawkeyes.
“It was during the third quarter,” Ferentz said. “There’s no secret formula, we play defense the way we play it. You’re talking about two really good defenses out there; every yard was hard. It was a tough game, they’re a tough team.
“To me, turnovers are usually the result of someone being where they’re supposed to be but then sometimes you make an extra effort.”
After Iowa took a three-score lead, Brock Purdy was taken out of the game and freshman Hunter Dekker was given a chance to play for Iowa State. His first two drives resulted in three-and-outs, but on his third drive he led the Cyclones on a seven-play, 83-yard drive and threw the game’s final touchdown to Tarique Milton.
Campbell made clear that Purdy’s starting job was not in jeopardy.
“I would assume Brock’s gonna be our guy,” Campbell said. “What we put Hunter in to do is kind of allow Brock to gather himself and really settle the game back down.”
Iowa State drove deep into Iowa territory in the game’s final seconds but missed a field goal attempt to make it a one-score game.
Turnovers have played a key role in Iowa keeping its streak over Iowa State alive as the Cyclones have risen up the rankings in college football and improved their team to become Big 12 Championship contenders.
In the last four editions of the rivalry, the Hawkeyes have forced nine turnovers and have turned the ball over zero times.
Despite the lack of turnovers — and lack of wins — against the Hawkeyes, Iowa State’s defense is ready to move on and focus on the next week, according to defensive end Enyi Uwazurike.
“It’s a long season, it’s all about how we respond,” Uwazurike said. “How we go through adversity, that’s what makes us who we are.”
Iowa State visits UNLV next Saturday night, while Iowa plays Kent State at home (kickoff scheduled for 2:30 p.m.).
No. 10 Iowa 27, No. 9 Iowa St. 17
Iowa 0 14 10 3 — 27
Iowa St. 3 7 0 7 — 17
ISU–FG Assalley 23, :39.
IOWA–Goodson 4 run (Shudak kick), 8:13.
IOWA–C.Jones 26 pass from Petras (Shudak kick), 1:01.
ISU–Hall 4 run (Mevis kick), :07.
IOWA–Campbell 6 fumble return (Shudak kick), 5:08.
IOWA–FG Shudak 51, 2:56.
IOWA–FG Shudak 22, 12:57.
ISU–Milton 13 pass from Dekkers (Assalley kick), 3:27.
First downs 11 21
Total Net Yards 173 339
Rushes-yards 39-67 27-87
Passing 106 252
Punt Returns 4-53 1-11
Kickoff Returns 2-44 0-0
Interceptions Ret. 3-47 0-0
Comp-Att-Int 11-21-0 24-43-3
Sacked-Yards Lost 4-31 2-10
Punts 8-51.125 7-42.286
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards 5-50 4-25
Time of Possession 31:34 28:25
RUSHING–Iowa, Goodson 21-55, Kelly-Martin 8-28, Pottebaum 2-8, (Team) 1-(minus 1), Petras 7-(minus 23). Iowa St., Hall 16-69, Brock 3-15, Sanders 2-2, Purdy 6-1.
PASSING–Iowa, Petras 11-21-0-106. Iowa St., Purdy 13-27-3-138, Dekkers 11-16-0-114.
RECEIVING–Iowa, C.Jones 2-36, Tracy 2-12, Goodson 2-9, LaPorta 1-21, Lachey 1-17, Ritter 1-9, Kelly-Martin 1-2, Ragaini 1-0. Iowa St., Kolar 4-34, Hall 4-24, Sanders 3-41, Hutchinson 3-22, D.Wilson 2-56, Milton 2-22, Noel 2-17, D.Jackson 1-23, Rus 1-9, Allen 1-2, Brock 1-2.
MISSED FIELD GOALS–Iowa, Shudak 50. Iowa St., Mevis 45.