I was worried about the game today. This Cyclone team is so beat up from injuries and illness, that I figured a letdown was in order, especially playing on the road after an emotional win.
There's not really a whole lot to it. The story is that Iowa State's defense did not play well to win this game: A&M was 10 of 12 on 3rd down conversitions, and 2 of 2 on 4th down conversions (you will see that it's 10 of 13, and 2 of 3 on 4th, but those were from A&M kneeling the ball down to run out the clock, as opposed to scoring another TD). When the ISU defense got two 3rd down stops, A&M went for it on 4th down and picked up the first down.
When the opposing offense doesn't have to punt or kick any field goals the entire game, it's going to be that much more difficult to win.
The teams were even in turnovers, penalties, and time of possession. ISU only had to punt the ball twice, yet they only come away with 10 points in the game. It came down to some 3rd and 4th down conversions on the part of A&M, and ISU's offense not being able to get into the endzone.
Even if ISU would've made all their field goals, and made field goals instead of turning the ball over in the redzone, ISU would've only had 19 points. The story of the game then would have been how ISU's offense was held to field goals, and A&M's was able to score TDs.
Bottom line: This ISU defense had to force some punts to give ISU a chance in this one, and they did not. This team is not built to keep up with 500 yards of offense.
Now the team comes back to Ames for home games against Oklahoma State and Colorado. I hope the team can regroup, get heathier, and come out ready for a tough game against Oklahoma State.
Finally, don't throw yourself out a window or go crazy. A week ago, fans were talking about the chances of winning out, or winning 3 of the last 4. Now those same people are talking about Iowa State losing out, and are getting really pessimistic. Let's not get that way. There's still 3 more games left, and many of us were already thinking this season has been much better than expected.
Getting to 6 or 7 wins is still a possibility, and hopefully as many of you as possible come to Jack Trice next week to cheer this team on as they try to upset Oklahoma State.
What are your thoughts on the game, and also your thoughts on the final 3 game stretch?