Good Cop/Bad Cop: Texas


Daniel Jacobi II

T.J. Tampa signals a third down against Kansas State on Oct. 8.

Good cop: Anthony Hanson

Iowa State will have another top-25 opponent this week. Life in the Big 12 conference will continue as this week Matt Campbell and company will face Texas in Austin.

The trajectories of the Cyclones’ and Longhorns’ respective seasons couldn’t be more different. Texas is fresh off a 49-0 statement win over Oklahoma in the Red River Rivalry. Iowa State, on the other hand, is still searching for its first Big 12 win.

The Cyclones are again searching for answers to offensive woes this week. In Iowa State’s most recent loss to Kansas State, the defense kept the Cyclones in the game. They limited Wildcat runners Deuce Vaughn and Adrian Martinez to season-low rushing yards. But, stops didn’t translate into points offensively.

Kansas State took advantage of just a few mistakes in pass coverage. It was all the squad needed to hand Iowa State another tough loss.

Iowa State’s chances at the post-season are now hanging in the balance. The Cyclones need three wins to become bowl eligible. With six remaining on the schedule, Iowa State does have three winnable home games against Oklahoma, West Virginia and Texas Tech.

This week Iowa State needs a momentum booster before its upcoming bye week. There are no moral victories in college football, but if Iowa State is going to save its season, its offense needs to gain something to be proud of against Texas.

Campbell said Iowa State is inches away, and I agree. Iowa State will end multiple drives with touchdowns as the defense keeps the Cyclones within striking distance. This is what Iowa State needs to gain momentum and get healthy with a bye week next week.

Prediction: Iowa State 21, Texas 17

Bad Cop: Payne Blazevich

After a one-point loss to Kansas State at home, Iowa State has quickly lost its momentum from earlier in the season. The offense has been in a rut, and No. 22 Texas won’t provide any time to improve. 

The Cyclones currently sit at 0-3 in conference play, including two home losses against Baylor and No. 17 Kansas State. In Iowa State’s past two losses, the offense failed to score more than 11 points. 

The offense has been dealing with a range of issues, from the offensive line to quarterback Hunter Dekkers’ individual play and play-calling that lacks the explosiveness anticipated in the preseason. 

No matter the true root of the problem, intrinsic offense issues won’t be fixed in a week. If there is any shot of Iowa State securing its first Big 12 win, the bulk of the load needs to be carried by the defense. 

But, the Texas offense will provide another considerable challenge for the defense. When starting quarterback Quinn Ewers was injured, the Longhorns were vulnerable yet capable of securing conference wins. With Ewers back, Texas has reached a new level. 

Texas will be coming off the back of a 49-0 win over Oklahoma in the Red River Showdown. In years past, this Iowa State matchup following a big win may have been a letdown threat, but that’s probably not the case this season. 

After the third consecutive loss to Iowa State last season, a notorious video of Texas coach Bo Davis leaked where he was irate, scrutinizing his team’s effort and attitude. The loss to Iowa State was an embarrassment to Texas, and the Longhorns will be looking for revenge. 

The Cyclones are in desperate need of a bye week. It takes time to rectify offensive issues to this magnitude, and another game against a challenging opponent does Iowa State no favors. 

By season’s end, Iowa State may find its rhythm and offensive identity. But, that level of growth doesn’t happen in seven days. 

Prediction: Texas 24, Iowa State 14