The Iowa State Cyclones could play the role of spoiler on Friday night when the close out the home season against second ranked Oklahoma State. The Cyclones are 5-4 and will host an Oklahoma State team that at 10-0 is two wins away from play for the national championship.
Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads says the players are excited anytime you play a team that is this good, as that’s why you accept a scholarship to play football. He says there are not many times you get to play a team competing for the national title and they are looking forward to it.
Rhoads says the Cyclone defense needs to find a way to slow down a Cowboy offense that ranks third in the country. He says the offense is “scary explosive” and may be the best that he has tried to defend, and they also have a great defense. Rhoads says the Oklahoma State offense has no weaknesses.
Cowboy quarterback Brandon Weeden has thrown for more than 3,600 yards and 31 touchdowns this season. The 28-year-old returned to college football after a brief professional baseball career. He says this is a guy who has been around and his maturity and intelligence is paying off for the football program.
Rhoads says because Oklahoma State scores so many points an outstanding defense gets overlooked, and he says they play a lot of snaps because of how fast the offense scores, and the stats can be misleading about how good they are. Rhoads says he would love to see the seniors get a victory in their final home game.
He says any time you come into a program, you have to have a group of players to buy into what you’re trying to establish and he says he is very beholding to the first senior class for that. And he says this class has certainly done the same with what they have given to the program.
Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy says experience is a big factor in their success as he says their quarterback guides the ship and that is big for the team. Gundy says the players know what they are playing for in these last couple of games. He says they say it every day and the team understands that.
Gundy says the success they are having began in the off season as they told the team where they were at and he says they told them the success would depend on what they put into it.