Cyclones can win by using talented offense to offset porous defense

Zac Reicks

So let’s get this straight. Kansas State has beaten Iowa State eight consecutive times.

The Wildcats have outscored the Cyclones during that span by an average margin of what seems like 114 points.

And the last time Iowa State won in Manhattan, Kan., Dennis Eckersly was serving up gopher balls to a lame Kirk Gibson who enjoyed about as much mobility as a KSU student in their fanciest pair of Wranglers.

And I am supposed to write about how I think Iowa State is going to win on Saturday?

Well, here goes.

For all the disillusioned KSU fans out there who still think the ‘Cats will win the Big 12 North, wake up and smell the Buffalo chips.

Top Guns

Heisman hopeful Seneca Wallace is more than enough to handle the Wildcat tandem of quarterback Ell Roberson and running back Darren Sproles. Not since the WWF’s tag team of Nicolia Volkoff and The Iron Sheik have I seen a more disgraceful duo who can’t win the big ones when it counts.

Since the 2001 season, Roberson has lost to Oklahoma, Colorado twice, Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Nebraska, a worthless Syracuse team and a Chris Simms-led Texas squad. And the teams he has beat, well — we all know Bill Snyder’s tendency to schedule the best early-season competition in the country (pause and listen to every knowledgeable college football fan laugh robustly).

Kicking game

Iowa State is bad once again this year. Kansas State on the other hand, is uncharacteristically enjoying choke jobs that would make Scott Norwood proud. Word has it that after the Texas game, ‘Cats fans pleaded with Snyder to make Jared Brite wear brightly colored leg warmers and change his first name to “Rainbow.”

Brite has combined with Joe Rheem to miss seven extra points and four field goals so far and still has three games remaining to add to those totals. Good luck, fellas.

Passing Game

Iowa State’s receivers have speed, big play ability and sure hands, while Kansas State’s are used to block for their running game. Wallace has thrown for 2,495 yards and has four different receivers with over 30 catches. Roberson, meanwhile, has accounted for 867 yards through the air and wideout Taco Wallace will need a hard shell to absorb punishing hits from ISU safety JaMaine Billups.

The one area Iowa State will struggle with is their porous run defense. The Cyclone front seven will give away first downs like Wildcat resident assistants handing out cowboy hats and belt buckles to the incoming freshmen. But it will be two keys that will decide Saturday’s affair.

First of all, ISU running backs need to prove that they can keep the pressure off of Wallace and the passing attack. Don’t be surprised if you see No. 32 Wet Paper Bag showing up on the KSU tackle chart with two solos and three assists.

Secondly, Bill Snyder will outcoach ISU head Coach Dan McCarney and his staff for the umpteenth straight year. The Wildcats even took our best coach, Bobby Elliot, and now have him commandeering one of the best defenses in the nation. To save time, McCarney and his assistants should just mail a copy of Iowa State’s playbook to the Wildcat coaching staff because they pretty much know everything the Cyclones run anyway.

Despite this, look for Wallace and company to overcome a superb Wildcat defense and send KSU fans back to the barn for a long night of milking.

Just don’t pull a Dusty Mangum on me and chant “We hate you, we hate you.”

Zac Reicks

is a senior in journalism and mass communication from Lawler. He is the assignment sports editor of the Daily.