Paul Rhoads

In a rugged Big 12 race there is never an opportunity to celebrate a victory too long or mourn over a loss. Iowa State must bounce back from a loss to Kansas State as the Cyclones prepare for this weekend’s visit to Oklahoma State.

 “Life in the Big 12 moves very fast this time of year and you better respond fast if you’re gonna have any opportunity for success. I thought our kids responded that way yesterday as they came back to work, and we got a nice morale boost at the end of the day discovering we were 24th in the initial BCS rankings,” I.S.U. coach Paul Rhoads said.

The Cyclones are 4-2 overall a visit an Oklahoma State team they knocked out of the national title picture with an upset victory in Ames. Rhoads says the Cowboys will be motivated by more than just revenge as he says they will be prepared to win the next game just has the Cyclones are prepared to win.

The second half of the schedule is difficult by Rhoads likes where the Cyclones sit at the mid-way point. “We know how close we are to being a 6-0 football team, and that’s a positive in my mind, because we know that we are a good football team and we have to build on it,” Rhoads says.

The Cyclone offense converted on only four of 12 third down opportunities. Rhoads says the Cyclones will be more successful on third down by being more productive on first down. He says coaches talk more about first down than the media, as he says on defense you want to hold the other team to 3 yards or less and offensively you want to get 4 or more yards.

Rhoads says the Cyclones need to get more production out of the ground game. I.S.U. managed only 65 yards on the ground against K-State, and he says if they can get to 200 then it is probably a good day overall as an offense, and he would settle for 180 yards. Rhoads points out they haven’t had a 100-yard rusher since the first game.