AMES — Brock Purdy, an Arizona native, had no problem carving up the Baylor defense on a chilly 20-degree day at Jack Trice Stadium.
The Iowa State quarterback completed 18 of his 23 passes for 230 yards and a touchdown in the Cyclones’ 28-14 win over Baylor. He also led Iowa State in rushing with 56 yards on 12 attempts and a rushing touchdown. To cap his day off, he caught a 2-point conversion attempt from Deshaunte Jones, who was a high school quarterback.
“(My arm) is a little rusty from high school but I can get the job done,” Jones said with a laugh.
Purdy’s all-around performance impressed Iowa State Coach Matt Campbell.
“I thought he was incredible tonight,” Campbell said. “He was magnificent in at least the first three quarters of the game. If you’re going to be harsh, the only harshness I would have is on that third down play in the fourth quarter that he should’ve thrown away and ended up taking a sack. Other than that, I thought his poise was tremendous and he was spot on. We needed that, and he certainly delivered.”
Iowa State scored on all three of its first-half drives and it scored on five of its eight total drives thanks to Purdy’s success.
Iowa State only allowed 14 points, which is good. But it gave up 505 yards, which is bad.
The Cyclones seemed to get pressure on Baylor quarterback Charlie Brewer regularly, but they could never complete the sack. They’d get to him, but he’d end up scrambling for a gain.
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“From the coverage aspect of it to getting pressure on their quarterback, we struggled to sustain any consistency tonight,” Campbell said. “We’ll have to evaluate that aspect of it. I thought early on, it worked, the bend but don’t break.
“We’ll evaluate it and look and see what we did well and what we didn’t do well. But there are some things that we’ll have to continue to clean up. A lot of it I think you’d still credit to missed tackles and opportunities to get guys down and we didn’t do a great job of that at all tonight.”
The bright spot was Iowa State’s red-zone defense. Baylor scored just two times in seven red zone trips.
“I think against a team like that, very skilled, a team that’s certainly over the last couple of weeks been able to put up some points, you know, the ability to win situational football,” Campbell said. “It wasn’t on third down, per se, that we were winning tonight, but on the flip side, it was having the ability to win in the red zone and that was huge for this team.”
Young guys continue to deliver
Iowa State is led by older players in receiver Hakeem Butler, running back David Montgomery, defensive back Brian Peavy and defensive lineman Ray Lima.
But the young players aren’t shrinking away from the moment.
“You look at our offense, there’s a lot of young guys,” Campbell said. “You’re talking starting with the guy that’s conducting it in Purdy. You’re talking a lot of new starters even on the offensive line. (Tight end) Charlie Kolar, with Chase Allen going down. Guys that have had to step up and really kind of — what I appreciate about that entire group is they’ve responded. Collin Olson, Charlie Kolar, certainly what Brock is doing. It’s giving us a chance.”
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