College football’s week nine slate was expected to be predictable and, relatively speaking, undramatic. Well, Halloween had other plans. From coast-to-coast weird things were happening and Ames, Iowa was no exception.
Texas, who recently upset a top 10 Sooners team and manhandled Kansas State, rolled into Ames as 5 1/2-point favorites. Jerrod Heard and Tyrone Swoopes seemed to have a nice formula for rotating in the game depending on the scenario. The offense wasn’t pretty at times but it was working. The defense was physical and the pass rush was apparent. All would be well in Austin, right?
Not even close. Texas would lay a monstrous egg on Saturday night in front of a fired up ISU homecoming crowd. After both teams would go three and out on their opening possessions, newly appointed Cyclone quarterback, Joel Lanning, would lead his team to an 11-play, 66-yard touchdown drive.
Lanning, as expected, would struggle throwing the ball at times. However he accomplished his most important mission which is take care of the ball. On the day he was 19/37 (51.4%) for 188 yards, one touchdown and zero interceptions. Though not stellar through the air, Lanning would do an excellent job of keeping drives alive with his legs. He racked up 64 yards on the ground.
To add to the Longhorn’s troubles, running back Mike Warren had yet another stellar day going for 157 yards and one touchdown on the ground. After his three-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, Iowa State would take a 10-0 lead into halftime. Lanning would have a 19-yard touchdown pass to Dondre Daley in the third quarter. ‘Clone RB Joshua Thomas punched a one-yarder into the end zone late in the fourth. That would prove to be more than enough needed for the win.
Even with all that, though, the stars of the game were the Cyclone defense. The ‘Clone’s D made Jerrod Heard and Tyrone Swoopes look, to put it mildly, hard to watch. At the halfway mark of the second half both UT quarterbacks combined had completed one pass beyond the line of scrimmage. Overall Heard and Swoopes combined for 85 yards passing, 71 yards rushing and no points. Coming into this game ISU was ranked 114th nationally in passing defense and 103rd in scoring defense.
Once again question marks, frustration and head-scratching have made their way back into the Texas locker room. On the flip side of that, with OC Mark Mangino gone and Joel Lanning running the offense, ISU may have found the spark they were looking for.
|3rd Down Eff||2-13||15-24|
|4th Down Eff||1-1||1-2|
|Yds Per Pass||3.9||4.9|
|Yds Per Rush||3.7||4.4|
Key Point In The Game
In all honesty there really wasn’t one key point in this game. Texas was disorganized, unprepared and they looked like they didn’t want to be playing football. It baffles me that a team like Texas could possibly think they’re good enough to take anyone lightly. If that is what actually happened then this program is in worse shape than we thought.
If I were forced to pick a key point I would say it was Warren’s three-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. Because if ISU hadn’t scored another point that would’ve still been enough for the win. How’s THAT for analysis?
Emptying The Notebook
To me, offensively Texas is simply stuck. In college football, least of all the Big 12, one-dimensional quarterbacks just won’t work. I keep reading that “Charlie Strong has to fix this offense.” Fix what? His two quarterbacks completed only 12 of their 22 pass attempts and most of those were very short, high-percentage routes that never went anywhere.
With Kansas, West Virginia, Tech and Baylor remaining it will be interesting to see what happens the rest of the way for the 3-5 Longhorns. Texas has no identity right now so we have no idea what to expect from them. KU, WVU and Tech are all winnable games in their own way. Kansas has shown no signs of life and WVU and Tech are extremely inconsistent. But who knows which Texas team will show up.
Man did social media light up after this one.
This is miles worse for Texas than TCU 2015. Worse than BYU 2013. Worse than the Texas Bowl. Probably worse than KSU/ISU in 2010.
— David Ubben (@davidubben) November 1, 2015
Even Spieth was putting in his two cents. His very legitimate two cents.
What in the WORLD is Texas doing punting right now……….
— Jordan Spieth (@JordanSpieth) November 1, 2015
Then it started becoming real.
Might be time to entertain the possibility that Texas could get shut out by the nation's 103rd-ranked scoring defense.
— David Ubben (@davidubben) November 1, 2015