If anyone just checks the box score in this game, they’d point to Iowa State giving up over 600 yards of total offense and pin the loss on them.
Not even close.
Despite giving up six football fields, the defense made key stops and gave the offense nine lives to try and spark a comeback. But just like a disobedient cat, the Cyclones offense kept jumping out the window of a four-story building.
It didn’t look that way in the beginning. Jared Barnett had a couple good throws and almost ran in a touchdown himself on the opening drive. Jeff Woody finished the job and the team took a 7-0 lead.
Then it fizzled. As described in the halftime report, Barnett started looking like the Barnett we’ve seen as of late. Wildly inaccurate throws, and all of a sudden that offensive line that was disguised started to look just as bad as when Steele Jantz was under center.
When Jantz came in for the fourth quarter, it still looked as bad. But at least the team finally marched down the field on their final possession down 31-10. It was clear, like this site’s been saying all along, that Jantz is a better passer because he steps into his throws and actually looks at other receivers on the field. He gives players a chance to catch the ball, sometimes it just depends on which player on which team.
Just so this isn’t a quarterback killing session, the run game was completely absent again for the second week. Shontrelle Johnson had another ineffective day with eight carries for 24 yards, also fumbling the ball but like the defense did most of the day, it didn’t hurt the Cyclones. DeVondrick Nealy only had two catches for eight yards, but he was visually agitated when Jantz came into the game. He swiped the ball away on a bad short-hopper to him on the second play of the fourth quarter, and bobbled the ball on the same play call next down.
Barnett was the majority of the rushing output thanks to a couple of good zone reads. That’s probably the best thing anyone can say about the offense outside of the first drive.
So, is it Sam Richardson time in this quarterback futility competition between Barnett and Jantz? Well, from Bobby LaGesse:
Yikes. Iowa State falls to 4-3 and just 1-3 in the Big 12. Before the Cyclones start thinking about a bowl game, they need to find a way to fix this offense. They’ll have an opportunity to against Baylor before facing a brick wall that is Oklahoma in two weeks.
Brian Spaen is the lead editor for Clones Confidential. Keep up with the latest sports fails and disdain toward the Big Ten by following him on Twitter.