Ya'll know what's up. I'm going to do the preview a little differently, in that I'm just going to list my thoughts about this game:
Run The Ball. I think some forget this since it was a blowout last year, but Iowa State ran for 190 yards on 34 carries. That's 5.6 yards/carry for those of you not so good at math. The longest run was 17 yards, and Iowa State was able to grind out the yards against these guys. These guys know they can run against the Hawks. If they can get it going to start the game, they can control the clock, and keep the score low. Something that frustrated me last year was that it seemed like we abandoned the run too early, and we turned the ball over like mad in the air. You gotta do what you're successful at. If it means running the ball 45 times, then you run the ball 45 times. Run the ball, eat the clock, keep the score low, and hope that the D can make enough plays to keep you in the game.
D-Line Needs To Grow A Pair. This group is the weakness of the team. There's no going around it. These guys are going to have to man-up and play the best game they possibly can. These guys are like 6 feet tall and 230-250 pounds. They're undersized and they need to decide whether they want to get pushed around, or if they're going to push somebody around! Sack up and play the best game of your life guys!
Arnaud Needs To NOT Act A Fool. The guy is a leader. I also think his emotions get the best of him. Most of the time when he's throwing those picks, he's trying to do too much. Guy needs to settle down, know his role, and make the easy throw. For a guy who doesn't get sacked much at all, he makes too many mistakes. Like I said around the NIU game. The guy has the ability to be one of the better QBs in the league. He has the tools. He just needs to know how to use them. It sounds cliche, but it's so frustrating to see a guy who should be doing better than he is.... Maybe I'm delusional, but he can do better. Either way, dude needs to chill.
At the end of the day, we have no idea what will happen. It seems that in years I think ISU has a great chance to win, they lose, and in years where I think they have no shot, they somehow win. That 2007 victory was still one of the most shocking wins I think I've witnessed at Jack Trice.
How I feel about the Cyclones is this: with the D, they aren't that great, but we know what we're going to get from them. At the very least, when they give up a big play, they still go for the strip and try to create turnovers. With the offense, it's frustrating. It seems like there's very little upside, and almost all downside. I came away from NIU being unimpressed with the offense, and I just think we're in for another year where we struggle to score points. A good team would have hung over 40 on NIU with how they showed up last Thursday.
I just pray that this game does not come down to Special Teams, but that very well could be the difference in the game. It just depresses me too much to even try to talk in depth about our Special Teams this year.
Hopefully we get a good game and a Cyclone victory, but if I had predict, I'd go Iowa 27, Iowa State 16. Just score a damn TD in this game guys.