The football season ended with a thud for Iowa State as the Cyclones lost to Tulsa 31-17 in the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, Tennessee. The Cyclones squandered a fast start that saw them race out to a 17-7 lead at the end of one but from there it was all Tulsa as the Golden Hurricanes scored the next 24 points to avenge a season opening loss in Ames.
Senior defensive tackle Jake McDonough said Tulsa is a good team that had a good game plan and out-executed them in the game. The Cyclones were hoping to post the program’s sixth winning season in the last 23 years but instead must settle for a second straight 6-7 record.
“It just sucks that it’s over. We came in with a lot of guys, the 2009 class, we had high expectations this year and it just really hurts that we couldn’t live up to the expectations of the fans and ofr the team and coaches and everybody that’s part of the Cyclone Nation,” according to senior receiver Josh Lenz.
After a fast start the Iowa State offense was stymied. The Cyclones were only two of 14 on third down and only generated nine first downs. Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads said they needed to get in an offensive rhythm and they could not find that rhythm against Tulsa.
Rhoads was hoping for a better ending,”I don’t think I can express with enough sincerity my disappointment in the outcome of this game and the outcome in our performance for the fans who gave so much. Not only with this trip and this game, their holiday time, their hard earned money, their fanatical spirit and what they have done for us all season long and what they’ve done for our athletic department… I am genuinely disappointed in what we brought out there for the fans today.”