Purdy, Iowa State keep rolling in 34-24 win over Texas Tech
Purdy threw for 378 yards and three touchdowns, freshman Breece Hall ran 75 yards for the first of his two scores and Iowa State took a big lead early in a 34-24 victory against Texas Tech on Saturday.
Purdy had 277 yards and all three of his scoring tosses for a 20-0 lead early in the second quarter, with two TDs to tight end Charlie Kolar, as the Cyclones (5-2, 3-1 Big 12) won their third straight game since losing at Baylor.
Iowa State was down 20-0 in that trip to Waco when Purdy engineered three fourth-quarter touchdowns for a one-point lead before the Bears drove to a field goal and a 23-21 win. The Cyclones responded with comfortable wins over TCU (49-24) and West Virginia (38-14).
“We lost our way a little bit in terms of the joy of playing football early in the season,” coach Matt Campbell said. “Somewhere along down 20-0 in Waco, we found our joy of playing football again. We’ll have to keep plugging away, and that’s hard.”
The Red Raiders (3-4, 1-3) extended their longest losing streak in the series with Iowa State to four, dropping their second in a row this season since beating Oklahoma State for the best victory so far under first-year coach Matt Wells.
Purdy was 15 of 17 and had the ball again in the second quarter with the 20-point lead when he threw three straight incompletions. The Red Raiders answered with a 6-yard TD run by SoRodorick Thompson, who scored twice.
Texas Tech opened the second half with a 15-play, 90-yard drive to a field goal to get within 20-10 before Hall slipped through a tackle while tiptoeing along the sideline on the next play. The long TD was upheld on review.
“When you play a team that’s as good as them, and the program that they’ve built and where they’re at, you can’t come out of the game and just spot them 20,” Wells said. “Obviously, we weren’t dialed in at the beginning enough.”
Purdy had quite a stretch of slightly more than two quarters in Texas, from the rally in the loss at Baylor to the first quarter-plus against the Red Raiders. The sophomore completed 27 of 33 passes for 456 yards with five TDs in that stretch.
“Right from the get-go, coach is like, ‘Yo, let’s go. Let’s get going from the first quarter, first drive, and not holding anything back,'” Purdy said. “We did that I felt like today, did a great job of that.”
Hall added a punctuating 30-yard TD in the fourth quarter and finished with 183 yards rushing, his season high for the second straight week after going for 132 yards with three touchdowns against West Virginia.
Jett Duffey, coming off the first consecutive 350-plus-yard passing games for Texas Tech since Patrick Mahomes in 2016, was 40 of 52 for 239 yards with a mostly meaningless touchdown late.
There were two big plays in the second half that ended up not counting. First, Texas Tech cornerback DaMarcus Fields picked up a loose ball at the end of a run by Hall and ran it back 45 yards to the end zone. But replay showed Hall was down before the ball came out.
Iowa State’s La’Michael Pettway had a 62-yard catch-and-run score, but was flagged for pass interference for pushing off before the catch. Pettway had the other TD reception, a 17-yarder.
Iowa State: The game played out in an eerily similar way to the Cyclones’ loss at Baylor. But the teams were reversed. This time Iowa State went up 20-0 instead of falling behind by the same score, then let Texas Tech back in the game the same way Baylor gave the Cyclones a chance three weeks ago. The big difference: Tech never got closer than 10.
Texas Tech: Iowa State missed a chance to put the game just about out of reach in the first half with two stalled drives that ended in missed field goals by Brayden Narveson. But the Red Raiders had an even bigger miss when they were down 10 early in the fourth quarter, with Trey Wolff going wide right from 42 yards.
Iowa State: Oklahoma State at home next Saturday.
Texas Tech: At Kansas next Saturday.