October 29, 2008

Scouting the Cyclones

After a heartbreaking loss, it's back to action for the boys in orange and black.

Oklahoma State's quest for an undefeated season ended last weekend, as the top-ranked Texas Longhorns held off the Cowboys 28-24 in what was an exciting game. Now the 7-1 Pokes come back home to Stillwater to host Iowa State. If you're looking for the polar opposite of the Horns team-wise, then the Cyclones just might be it. Led by former UT co-defensive coordinator Gene Chizik, the Clones have struggled this season. Just how much? Read on to find out all you'd ever want to know about ISU football.

CYCLONES AT A GLANCE
Location:
Ames, Iowa
2007 record: 3-9 (2-6 Big 12)
Game time: 2:30 p.m. (ABC)
Current record: 2-6 (0-4)
Last week: 49-35 loss to Texas A&M
Current ranking: NA
Fact of the week: Current head wrestling coach at ISU, Cael Sanderson, went a perfect 159-0 in his matches in college. He won four individual national titles for the Cyclones.

THE BIG THING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT…
… the Cyclone offense:
Ranked 74th in total offense (350 yards per game), ISU doesn't move the ball much. Up until its game against Texas A&M last week, the highest total yardage amount the Clones amassed this season was in their first game against South Dakota State (388 yards). Against the Aggies, they put up an astounding 574 yards. Of that, 401 came through the air. Before that, the highest passing total for the Cyclones was the 269 yards against Kansas. Overall, the squad ranks 57th in passing offense (217 ypg). The rushing game isn't a threat, ranking 71st (133 ypg). Aside from the season-high 229 yards on the ground against SDSU, the 173 gained against A&M is the most they've put together on the ground this year. Alexander Robinson leads the team in rushing 402 yards and three touchdowns on the season. Quarterback Austen Arnaud has 1,571 yards and nine touchdowns, along with four interceptions and a 60 percent completion mark. R.J. Sumrall leads the team in receiving with 589 yards and four touchdown catches.
… the Cyclone defense: Ranked 101st in total defense (422 ypg), ISU struggles mightily in stopping the opposition. The Cyclones come in 101st nationally in scoring defense, allowing an average of 31.6 points a game. Against the run, ISU is 87th (170 ypg) and 103rd against the pass (252 ypg). Lyle Christopher leads the defense with five sacks on the season, followed closely by Kurtis Taylor with four. James Smith leads the team in tackles with 62. The defense has eight interceptions of the season, led by the two brought in by Michael Bibbs.
… the coach: In his second year in Ames, Chizik has had trouble getting traction. With a 5-15 overall record and 2-10 Big 12 mark, ISU hasn't risen above the bottom part of the Big 12 North. It's a tough situation there and not even former coach Dan McCarney could win there consistently. Did the school expect someone else could?

OVERALL THOUGHTS
The only thing the Cowboys have to guard against here is not focusing enough. The Cyclones are beaten and battered and shouldn't be much tougher to beat than Missouri State or Washington State. The mission here? Don't trip. OSU 59, ISU 3.

...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!