Momentum swings define college sports because younger athletes naturally don’t know how to handle adverse situations. The Iowa State football team not only doesn’t know how to handle situations when a game is close, but they fell to a major momentum change shortly before halftime, creating the eventual blowout against Oklahoma that everybody expected.
Despite not scoring on their 10th consecutive opening drive this season, the Cyclones showed a tremendous amount of improvement on both sides of the ball for the first 28 minutes. Quarterback Grant Rohach had his fair share of overthrows but completed 21 of 34 passes for 179 yards. He was notably better than previous weeks.
Iowa State had a surprise day, leading 10-3 and had the ball near midfield with 2:53 to go. Conservative play calling led to a punt by Kirby Van Der Kamp that was angled but didn’t reach far enough to go out of bounds. Jalen Saunders caught the ball and took it to the house for 91 yards.
Instead of doing anything with the ball after the score, the Cyclones ran out the clock. The Sooners scored 38 more points in the second half to turn the game into a rout.
Head coach Paul Rhoads even tried to get his team together before walking into the locker room, trying to keep them motivated after an incredible start. But it was all for nothing, and everything that the Cyclones did in the first half was erased in the second.
That’s exactly they say teams are as good as their record. A team that’s won just one game this season, that hasn’t quit on the season, would do exactly what Iowa State did today.