High expectations have become the new theme for Iowa State.
Iowa State coach Matt Campbell, in his third year, raised the bar for the program after upset wins over top-five ranked teams Oklahoma and TCU last season. But despite all the success in the last two seasons, the Cyclones have yet to beat instate rival Iowa in Campbell’s brief tenure.
Powered by a stout defense, the Hawkeyes extended their recent series domination over the visiting Cyclones with a 13-3 win at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday. Iowa’s seniors claimed their fourth straight win in the Cy-Hawk showdown — the first senior class to earn that distinction in more than two decades.
Iowa quarterback Nate Stanley completed 16 of 28 passes for 166 yards, while Toren Young rushed for a team-best 68 yards.
For the second week in a row, Iowa (2-0) followed the same formula to success. After wearing down Northern Illinois behind a stingy defense and solid running game, the Hawkeyes scored 10 second-half points and held the Cyclones scoreless.
The Hawkeyes’ defense allowed just 188 total yards and have given up only 10 points in two games this season.
A year ago, the Hawkeyes pulled out a 44-41 overtime shootout win over Cyclones, but with both teams combining for nine points through three quarters, Stanley keyed the decisive 13-play, 83-yard scoring drive. Stanley completed four passes for nine yards or more on Iowa’s only touchdown march.
Stanley’s 30-yard pass to Brandon Smith on third down to Iowa State’s 2-yard line set up Mekhi Sargent’s 2-yard touchdown run with 4:47 left in regulation.
With their season opener against South Dakota State canceled due to lightning, the Cyclones’ offense looked rusty. On their first drive, the Cyclones drove to Iowa’s 1-yard line but settled for a 23-yard field goal by Connor Assalley.
The Cyclones’ offense took a further hit when senior quarterback Kyle Kempt did not return after suffering a left leg injury late in the third quarter. Kempt was 15 of 21 for 126 yards, and the Hawkeyes held David Montgomery to 17 carries for 44 yards.
—Field Level Media