NOTEBOOK: Klein, Wildcats gash ISU defense


Photo: Huiling Wu/ Iowa State Daily

KSU quarterback Collin Klein scrambles past ISU linebacker Jeremiah George for a quick gain in Iowa State’s 27-21 loss to Kansas State on Oct. 13, 2012. Klein rushed for 105 yards and two touchdowns in the Wildcats’ fifth straight win against the Cyclones.

Jake Calhoun

Jeremiah George is sick of hearing about Kansas State.

The third-year ISU linebacker vented his frustrations following his team’s 27-21 loss to the No. 6 Wildcats (6-0, 3-0 Big 12) on Saturday afternoon at Jack Trice Stadium.

“It’s the worst feeling in the world because for 365 days, for the rest of the time I’m here at Iowa State, I’m going to have to hear about Kansas State and it’s a horrible feeling,” George said after the loss. “All season, we hear about how Kansas State works. Well, we work too.”

Iowa State (4-2, 1-2) has lost five straight games to Kansas State by an average of 5.8 points per game. The Cyclones have not won a game in the series — nicknamed “Farmageddon” — since 2007.

The play of KSU quarterback Collin Klein made all the difference in the game, which saw the largest turnout in ISU history with a max-capacity attendance of 56,800.

Klein, who is notorious for his rushing ability, broke eight of his 25 carries for seven yards or more while averaging 4.2 yards per carry.

ISU linebacker Jake Knott said Kansas State’s variety in blocking schemes made it difficult to defend against the run, especially with Klein and running back John Hubert threatening at the point of attack.

“Really you’ve just got to be fundamentally sound,” Knott said of defending the KSU offense. “If one guy doesn’t hit his gap the right way, they always find that and that’s what they’re so good at and that’s what teams are going to have to stop.”

Coming into this game, Iowa State’s run defense had ranked 30th in the nation in fewest rushing yards allowed per game with 115.8. On Saturday, the Cyclones allowed 177 rushing yards, including 105 from Klein and 79 from Hubert.

While Klein’s running attack was a handful for the Cyclones, his passing caught the ISU secondary out of position at multiple points in the game, thanks to the key emphasis of defending the run.

“They did a nice job of getting open,” said ISU coach Paul Rhoads of the KSU receivers. “[Klein is] an efficient passer. You look at his numbers and he’s an efficient passer. The numbers aren’t big and all that, but he’s efficient at it.”

Through the air, Klein went 16-of-24 in pass completions while amassing 187 yards through the air.

Iowa State heads to Stillwater, Okla. next week for a battle against Oklahoma State. Game time has been announced for 11 a.m.

Record crowd unsettles Wildcats

With Jack Trice Stadium at capacity — thanks to an all-time attendance record of 56,800 — for the first time in its history, the crowd played a factor in unsettling the KSU offense for some avoidable mistakes.

Having come into the game with a national-best nine total penalties in its first five games, Kansas State committed seven penalties for 55 yards Saturday at Jack Trice.

“The crowd was great,” Knott said. “They were in the game the whole time, they were extremely loud.

“Credit the crowd for making [Kansas State] use up all their timeouts in the first half, that was huge.”

Saturday’s game overtook Iowa State’s previous record of 56,795, which was set in 2007 during a 24-13 loss to Northern Iowa.

Although the penalties could have been a noticable by-product of the crowd noise, KSU coach Bill Snyder said there may have been other factors involved.

“I’m not so sure that it was the crowd noise, and I haven’t visited with Collin and our offensive linemen about it, but I think it was more us not getting the calls where they needed to be and putting him in a position where he had too many decisions to make and not enough time because we didn’t get plays in as quickly as we should,” Snyder said. “It was that more than anything else, just not getting in position and not getting lined up.”