The Iowa State defense is preparing to face another standout quarterback when the Cyclones visit 21st ranked Oklahoma State in Big-12 play. Cowboy junior Daxx Garman is averaging 309 yards of passing and has eight touchdowns in three games.”Some guys can throw them ’em all, some guys are better underneath. He throws a really good deep ball with a lot of touch and they throw it a lot of times in a game. It only takes 3 of those to be successful and you’ve got a lot of points on the board,” ISU coach Paul Rhoads says.
Rhoads says Garman’s ability to throw the deep ball puts pressure on a defense. He says he has good velocity on the balls he throws and had good wide receivers and runningbacks.
If the Cyclones want to hang in with the better teams in the Big 12 they will need to find more offense. If begins with a struggling ground game that ranks last in the conference. Rhoads says they all know they are not running the ball well enough and they are working to improve it.
The Cyclones are averaging only 104 yards on the ground. “You’ve got to run the ball and you’ve got to defend the run if you are going to be successful, and we are not even scratching the surface,” Rhoads says. He says their quarterback is their leading rusher, not by design, and they need to improve blocking throughout the offense.
Rhoads says Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater is a tough environment for visiting teams as it has a sideline similar to Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City and in Norman, Oklahoma, where the fans are actively involved in the game.
Rhoads would like to get senior tight end E.J. Bibbs more touches. The preseason All Big 12 selection has only 11 receptions so far this season.
Iowa State is 1-3 after a loss to Baylor. Oklahoma State is 3-1 but coach Mike Gundy says they are far from being a title contender as je says they have to play well each week no matter who they play.