Head-to-Head History: Iowa State

Emma Hutchinson, Senior Sports Reporter

After one of the most exciting weekends for Texas football, the Longhorns look to hang on to the momentum they’ve created.

For the past three years, Iowa State has taken Texas for a spin. During their last meeting, the Cyclones welcomed the Longhorns to Ames with a 30-7 blowout in front of a sold out crowd. Texas managed to keep Iowa State at bay in the first half, with the Cyclones trailing 7-3 in their lowest scoring first half of the season. But it was only a matter of time before Iowa State running back Breece Hall and quarterback Brock Purdy accumulated 476 rushing yards in the second half, while Texas was held to a season-low of 207 rushing yards. 

One of the most memorable takeaways from that game was not seen on the field, but on a grainy phone video taken from the inside of the Texas team bus. Texas defensive line coach Bo Davis gave a profanity-laced speech to the players that went viral online, saying how some of them needed to “get in the transfer portal” after their poor performances. With nearly 20 Texas players entering the NCAA transfer portal from the end of the 2021 season to the beginning of the 2022 season, Davis’ message was clearly received.          

While Texas was struggling to adjust to head coach Steve Sarkisan during the 2021 season, Iowa State was getting comfortable under the direction of head coach Matt Campbell, who joined the program in 2016. The three-time Big 12 Coach of the Year has sent the Cyclones to five straight bowl games, including one in this past year, leaving the team tied for fourth in the Big 12 with a 7-6 record.

Ever since both Hall and Purdy entered the NFL Draft in the spring, it’s been a downhill slope for the Cyclones offensively. Hall put up 23 touchdowns in back-to-back seasons, averaging 6.1 yards per carry. Purdy completed over 80 percent of his passes last season and led the Big 12 in passing yards, averaging 245.2 per game.               

The Longhorns have not seen a victory against the Cyclones since 2018, when then-No. 18 Iowa State was defeated 24-10 by then-No. 13 Texas at Darrell K Royal Stadium. Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger worked his magic to assist the Longhorns in taking a first-half lead of 17-3, opening the night with a 7-yard touchdown run from an 80-yard drive. A 47-yard punt return late in the fourth quarter set up by wide receiver Tarique Milton secured Iowa State’s only touchdown of the game. 

This Saturday, the Longhorns are hopeful to come away with a victory, as Iowa State sits at a 0-3 record in Big 12 conference play, after losses to Baylor, Kansas and Kansas State. The Longhorns also hold home field advantage over the Cyclones and are 8-2 when playing at home against them.