On a day when there were plenty of plays by two freshmen quarterbacks, positive and negative, Iowa State’s Brock Purdy delivered the biggest dagger on Saturday at Jack Trice Stadium.
Purdy rifled a 48-yard touchdown pass to Hakeem Butler on a third-and-9 play with 2:25 left in the game to spur the Cyclones past Texas Tech 40-31.
Iowa State (4-3, 3-2 Big 12) sealed the victory when Greg Eisworth intercepted Texas Tech quarterback Alan Bowman with 1:40 remaining on the clock.
Moments before Purdy’s gritty scoring strike, Iowa State claimed a narrow lead when Bowman, also a freshman signal-caller, made a huge mistake on a botched play.
The Cyclones snared a 33-31 lead with 4:39 to go when Bowman bobbled the ball on an exchange on a handoff. The play began at the Tech 15-yard-line after an Iowa State punt, and as Bowman tried to recover the ball and avoid a huge loss with Jaquan Bailey in pursuit, he threw a pass from the end zone to the right side.
Although Bowman was out of the pocket, the ball never reached the line of scrimmage and a safety was called because Bowman was in the end zone.
The final crescendo marred what had been a back-and-forth battle with both teams’ defenses playing big roles and Texas Tech (5-3, 3-2) coming up big on special teams.
The Red Raiders hung the first score of the day on the scoreboard when Thomas Leggett blocked Corey Dunn’s punt, scooped it up and raced 17 yards to the end zone.
Texas Tech punter Dominic Panazzolo was also a major factor, dropping six of his seven punts inside the 20-yard-line to force Iowa State to climb uphill much of the day.
The Cyclones managed to climb well enough and often enough, churning out 422 total yards and 24 first downs to keep pace with Tech’s prolific offense.
Purdy passed for 250 yards and a pair of touchdowns and added 47 yards rushing, a nice complement to David Montgomery’s 125 yards and two scores in the running game.
Bowman passed for 323 yards, but was picked off three times — twice in the final period. The Raiders rushed for only 30 yards and never had a running play longer than a 12-yard Bowman scramble.
Down 31-24 when the fourth began, Texas Tech pulled even with a defensive TD. On second down from the 6-yard-line after Panazzolo pinned Iowa State at its own 4, Riko Jeffers sacked Purdy in the end zone and dislodged the ball. Dakota Allen smothered the ball for the touchdown.
—Field Level Media