They came out for senior night festivities and warm ups in their regular uniforms. When they returned to the locker room, white helmets with a Jayhawk on them and all black uniforms awaited them.
That was likely the highlight of Saturday night’s game at Memorial Stadium for Kansas, as Iowa State, led by third string quarterback Sam Richardson lit the Jayhawks up for 548 yards of total offense in a commanding 51-23 win.
With the loss, Kansas falls to 1-10 and 0-8 in Big 12 play. Iowa State (6-5, 3-5) becomes bowl eligible for the fourth time in as many years under coach Paul Rhoads.
The game started off like it was going to be a barnburner, as the Cyclones took a 3-0 on their second possession of the game. The Jayhawks responded with two yard touchdown run by running back Taylor Cox. Iowa State answered with an 11-yard score and the Cyclones led 10-7 after one quarter.
On the first play of the second quarter, running back Tony Pierson faked a flea flicker and took off on a 55-yard romp to give the Jayhawks a 17-14 lead. From there, the bottom fell out.
Richardson caught fire and Iowa State scored 21 unanswered points to blow the game wide open. Not even listed on the two-deep earlier in the week, Richardson went 23 of 27 for 250 yards with five total touchdowns (four passing, one running).
A field goal at time expired at the end of the half gave Kansas a brief reprieve, as they went to the locker room down 38-17.
"We were living very dangerously already at halftime," Weis said. "Because it was gonna take a perfect half for us to have a chance."
Unfortunately, for Kansas, there wasn’t much of a chance. They could never muster a rally, as both quarterbacks Michael Cummings and Dayne Crist struggled to get the team going. Three lost fumbles sealed their fate.
A 37-yard touchdown reception by Pierson from Crist brought KU to within 41-23 early in the fourth quarter. The Cyclones answered on the next possession.
Pierson finished with 74 yards and a touchdown on seven carries. James Sims added 81 yards on 21 carries.
Crist finished nine of 20 for 156 yards and a touchdown, while Cummings went two of five for 33 yards for the Jayhawks, who will have a week off before ending their season at West Virginia, December 1st.