Good Cop/Bad Cop: TCU

Brock Purdy runs the ball during the Iowa State vs. Oklahoma State football game Oct. 26. The Cyclones lost 34-27.

Megan Teske, ; Sam Stuve

Good Cop: Megan Teske

The game against Louisiana didn’t go as anyone predicted. Nevertheless, I am still optimistic Iowa State will win its first game of the Big 12 Conference against TCU.

After the 31-14 loss to open the season, the Cyclones will be looking to prove the doubters wrong and prove that they have what it takes to compete for the Big 12 Championship, and what better way to show that then by going out and getting their first Big 12 win on the road?

TCU has not yet played a game this season because COVID-19 issues canceled its nonconference game, and that can play in Iowa State’s favor or play against them.

The Cyclones will have the leg up because they had their nonconference game against Louisiana and a bye week to figure out what went wrong in the Louisiana game. But no nonconference game for TCU also means Iowa State will be studying old tapes of TCU from last season while TCU has a fresh tape of the Cyclones from two weeks ago, which could play in the Horned Frogs’ advantage.

The last time the Cyclones played the Horned Frogs, Iowa State won 49-24, and while Iowa State had more games under its belt than this time around, I still think quarterback Brock Purdy will have a better day Saturday than he did Sept. 12.

Against the Horned Frogs last year, Purdy threw for 247 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for 102 yards and two more touchdowns. While I’m not sure Purdy can do that again after the outing he had two weeks ago and given Charlie Kolar is still day-to-day, I do think Purdy and the Cyclones will be able to throw a few more touchdowns against a defense that lost seven starters from last year’s team.

Against the Ragin’ Cajuns, Iowa State’s defense wasn’t the whole problem. It was the breakdown of special teams that led to two touchdown scores and got Louisiana fired up that led to Iowa State’s demise.

TCU only returns three starters on offense, and it was revealed this week they will be led by Georgia transfer Matthew Downing, who played four games with the Bulldogs, meaning they will likely rely on the run game.

As long as the Cyclones can stop the run, the defense should be able to hold the Horned Frogs enough for Purdy and the offense to do enough damage to end that 18-game home opener win streak TCU has.

Prediction: Iowa State 27, TCU 21

Bad Cop: Sam Stuve

Iowa State is hungry for its first win of the season, especially after a disappointing 31-14 loss to Louisiana on Sept. 12.

TCU, on the other hand, is looking to continue its winning streak of 18 in home openers.

Against Louisiana, Iowa State struggled, especially in the second half as it was shut out in the half.

I do expect junior quarterback Brock Purdy to have a better outing against TCU than he did against Louisiana (16-35 throwing, 145 passing yards and threw one interception).

It may be enough, though, to beat TCU, however. In the past five seasons, TCU’s defense has finished in the top three in passing defense and first or second in the league in total defense.

TCU has preseason All-Big 12 junior safety Trevon Moehrig and senior linebacker Garret Wallow on defense, and while it did lose seven starters from last season’s team, it has shown the ability to reload on defense in recent years.

Iowa State will score more against TCU than it did against Louisiana; however, I don’t think it’ll be enough to beat TCU.

On the offensive side of the ball, Iowa State should keep TCU in check. TCU returns only three starters.

TCU is led by Georgia transfer and redshirt sophomore quarterback Matthew Downing, who was named as the starter Tuesday.

While TCU’s offense doesn’t have a preseason All-Big 12 player, it does have big play ability.

The Horned Frogs have tape of the Cyclones to look out for with the Cyclones having played a game this season.

Also, this will be the Cyclones’ first game in front of a crowd, as the Horned Frogs are permitted to have 12,000 fans in attendance, so the Horned Frogs do have somewhat of a home-field advantage.

Overall, I think the Cyclones’ defense will make things difficult for TCU’s offense, but I think TCU will score more due to special teams and a better starting field position.

I think Iowa State will out-gain TCU in yardage, but because of special teams and maybe a turnover or two, I’m picking TCU to win this one.

Prediction: TCU 20, Iowa State 17