At the Half: Cyclones Down, 28-20
Quenton Bundrage
AllCyclones Publisher
Posted Oct 26, 2013
Trey Scott

Offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham has dialed up the speed option, using it to convert on third-and-medium. Nealy's 11-yard touchdown run came on a speed option to the left on third-and-four

Iowa State fell behind 21-0 and then 28-7 but has battled back despite injuries to its starting quarterback, tight end, weakside linebacker, defensive end and presumably its starting running back, although there's no word on why Aaron Wimberly isn't playing.

At the half against No. 19 Oklahoma State, Iowa State is down 28-20.

The Cowboys reeled off a quick 14 points before five minutes on a long scoring drive and a Justin Giblert pick-six off ISU quarterback Sam Richardson, then took a 21-0 lead on a Clint Chelf pass to Charlie Moore.

Iowa State woke up Jack Trice Stadium with a Richardson touchdown pass to Quenton Bundrage — a 22-yard backshoulder fade — and has looked in-sync since then, giving up another touchdown but scoring twice more: a somersault flip over the pylon by DeVondrick Nealy and juggling catch made by Bundrage in the corner of the end zone.

Backup quarterback Grant Rohach provided the last touchdown pass, one of his three completions in relief of Richardson, who was crunched from behind while he slid and was administered a concussion test on the sideline. Rohach, the redshirt freshman from California, led the Cyclones on an 11-play, 54-yard drive on his first series, with Jeff Woody converting a fourth-and-one to keep the drive alive.

Tight end E.J. Bibbs has three receptions for 53 yards but went to the sideline midway through the second quarter with what looked to be a thigh injury and has stayed on the bench since then.

Wimberly, injured two weeks ago against Texas Tech, hasn't seen any game action. Redshirt freshman Luke Knott hasn't played — his brother, Jake, tweeted he was injured — and starting left end Willie Scott is in sweats on the sideline.

Chelf got the start for Oklahoma State over J.W. Walsh and has struggled for the most part, completing 8-of-21 passes for 64 yards and a touchdown. He had 57 net yards rushing.

Some observations:

  • Iowa State's makeshift offensive line, starting a different unit for the seventh time this year, hasn't afforded either quarterback much time in the pocket but both have made plays with their feet. Richardson completed a nice touch pass to Tad Ecby after being forced out of the pocket and on the next play scampered up the middle for 51 yards.

  • On clear passing scenarios — third-and-four or longer — the Cyclones have afforded their quarterback an average of 2.1 seconds in the pocket.

  • ISU has attempted to run behind a lead blocker twice, for a net total of two yards.

  • Offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham has dialed up the speed option, using it to convert on third-and-medium. Nealy's 11-yard touchdown run came on a speed option to the left on third-and-four.

  • Jeremiah George has been all over the field, his most impressive play being an open-field tackle of OSU jitterbug Josh Stewart. Jevohn Miller, replacing Knott, has played well in space. Miller and George each has four tackles.

  • No sacks for Iowa State, but the Cyclones have pressured Chelf. Nosetackle Brandon Jensen batted down a pass on fourth-and-nine.

  • The Cyclones have been penalized eight times for 52 yards. The Cowboys haven't been flagged once.

  • Bundrage's six touchdowns this year ties him for 10th-best in single-season school history.

  • OSU running back Desmond Roland had 11 carries for 54 yards and two touchdowns in the first half. Roland got the start in lieu of Jeremy Smith, who has struggled this season.

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