OU football: History is on Sooners' side against Iowa State
After losing to Notre Dame at home last weekend, the No. 12 Sooners look to bounce back when they take to the road Saturday, facing off against Iowa State in Ames.
The Cyclones are 5-3 and are coming off a 35-21 win against Baylor last weekend.
“Iowa State has done really well,” coach Bob Stoops said. “They are well coached and they’re an excellent team in how they execute plays. They have played well this year on the road and at home; they’ve been very tough.”
But history is on the Sooners’ side: OU has lost back-to-back regular season games only once under Stoops (when the Sooners lost to Notre Dame and Texas in ‘99), and a Stoops-led squad has never lost to Iowa State — one of only two Big 12 teams with that distinction, the other being Kansas.
“We are a prideful program,” senior quarterback Landry Jones said. “We have a lot of pride in what we do, and we are not going to shut it down. When game day comes around we are going to put our best guys on the field and we are going to play hard.”
Against Baylor, Iowa State senior quarterback Steele Jantz completed an Iowa State record 36 passes on his way to 381 yards and five touchdowns — both career highs for Jantz, who lost the starting job to sophomore Jared Barnett before the TCU game and didn’t regain it until last weekend.
But Jantz’s handle on the starting spot is anything but secure, and if the senior struggles against OU’s No. 16 scoring defense, expect to see Barnett enter the game in relief.
This season, Jantz has thrown for 1,219 yards, 12 touchdowns and eight interceptions, and Barnett has thrown for 586 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions.
It’s Iowa State’s defense, however, that has OU’s attention.
“You look at their team, and they’re playing really well; they beat TCU earlier in the year,” Stoops said. “They played Kansas State tough up there in Ames. They’re a team who always plays excellent defense, and they’re doing a nice job.”
The Cyclones’ front seven and senior linebacker A.J. Klein, in particular, will challenge an OU offense that rushed for just 15 yards on 24 carries against Notre Dame.
“We need to watch a lot of film, get on some of their tendencies defensively,” junior center Gabe Ikard said. “When it comes down to it, we need to play fundamental and physical football on Saturday. Their defense takes a lot of pride in the way they play and how physical they are at the line of scrimmage. So we need to play well.”