116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
AMES — A hallmark of Matt Campbell’s time as Iowa State football coach has been his ability to sustain success.
He’s been able to sustain success season-to-season — Iowa State has finished .500 or better every year except his first year. And he’s been able to sustain success week-to-week — the Cyclones have had at least one three-game winning streak in Big 12 Conference play in every season since his first. Twice, his Iowa State teams have put together five-game conference winning streaks.
After a dominating win against Kansas last week, Iowa State is focused on sustaining success during its bye week and before finishing the season with seven straight games.
“It gives us a lot of confidence and momentum,” quarterback Brock Purdy said after the Kansas game. “Coach just got done telling us in the locker room that the thing we’ve failed to do so far this year is to start a streak. To be able to have this game and move onto the next game and maintain this level will be huge for us.”
Iowa State has bounced back from both losses it's had this season with dominating wins.
“We respond well to a loss,” tight end Chase Allen said. “We didn’t play very well against Iowa, then we did against UNLV. We always have a really good response to a loss. What we have to be better at is sustaining that standard and not letting the standard dip back down after a win.
“It’s just a matter of carrying the momentum over to the next few weeks.”
That’s what Campbell wants to see.
He knows his team has motivation after a loss. He wants to see that same level of motivation after a convincing win against an overmatched opponent.
“I think we’ll see,” Campbell said. “The reality of our program has grown and we’ve proven we have the ability to strengthen through struggle. That’s always been a part of the character of who we are.
“The great teams not only have the ability to strengthen through struggle, but they also have the ability to strengthen through positive. We’ll see if we have the ability to do that.”
Safety Greg Eisworth has felt the team coming along and coming together.
“It felt like we finally took that step as a team this season,” Eisworth said. “Everything was meshing against Kansas. Defense was getting turnovers and three-and-outs and the offense was putting points on the board. That’s huge, especially going into this bye week because it’s something to build off of.
“Having the performance we had tonight and then going into the bye week is really beneficial.”
Campbell believes Iowa State’s ability to start a streak starts in practice.
“I will say this, I thought our Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday practice before Kansas — I don’t know how long I’ve been here, but that was the best I’ve seen,” Campbell said. “To me, that’s a great indicator that what you do in practice is still important. If you practice well, you play well and great things can happen.”
It’s a message the players received loud and clear.
“We have to come with the same attitude to practice as we did the week before Kansas,” defensive end Enyi Uwazurike said. “We practiced really well this week and it allowed us to do as well as we did against Kansas. We need to keep that same mentality throughout the bye week and the week after that to keep this roll going.”