Lanning takes over as Iowa State falls to Baylor


Redshirt sophomore quarterback Joel Lanning runs the ball after faking the handoff Saturday against No. 3 TCU. The Horned Frogs won the game 45-21.

Max Dible

The Cyclones didn’t win the game Saturday in Waco, Texas, but they did win the second half and walked out of McLane Stadium with a few bright spots on which to build for the rest of the season.

After falling behind 35-0 with more than eight minutes remaining in the second quarter, Iowa State (2-5, 1-3 Big 12) outscored No. 2 Baylor (7-0, 4-0 Big 12) 27 to 10 in the game’s final 38-plus minutes.

The contest ended in a 45-27 ISU loss, but the Cyclones were able to make the game more competitive on the strength of backup quarterback Joel Lanning’s arm, another strong rushing performance from Mike Warren and a defense that stood up in the second half against the country’s No. 1 offense.

Lanning replaced fifth-year senior Sam Richardson midway through the second quarter, after Richardson threw his second interception, capping an abysmal 3-for-11 passing effort.

Lanning finished the day 12-for-17 through the air, passing for 144 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for 13 yards on 10 carries, a stat skewed somewhat by yardage subtracted because of Baylor sacks.

As a team, Iowa State rushed for 232 yards on the afternoon, led by Warren, the nation’s leading freshman running back, who put up 145 yards by himself — his fourth 100-yard rushing performance of the season.

The ISU defense held Baylor scoreless for nearly 33 minutes between the middle of the second quarter until 5:31 remained in the fourth.

The most prolific offense in the NCAA put up only 485 yards, 235 yards shy of its season average, and 45 points, nearly 19 points fewer than the group had managed through six previous games this year.

While not enough for a win, the performance was an encouraging one for the Cyclones, who have been forced to navigate the nation’s top three offenses over the last three weeks.

The schedule lets up a little as Iowa State will square off with Texas on homecoming weekend next Saturday in Ames.