It all started so promising.
The Warhawks forced the Iowa State offense into two early turnovers, but after a missed field goal and turning the ball over on downs,
There would be no slowing the Iowa State offense from there.
Sophomore quarterback Brock Purdy accounted for six touchdowns (three in the air, three on the ground), threw for 435 yards in only three quarters of action and the Cyclones overwhelmed ULM Saturday, 72-20.
Purdy’s performance, as well as that of the entire Cyclone offense, tied or set several school records for output.
Offense had lapses
Corey Straughter intercepted Purdy on the first play from scrimmage deep in Iowa State territory.
However, the offensive wheels spun out, an illegal formation penalty wiped out a successful field goal attempt and the corresponding field goal was missed.
After Iowa State finally got on the board in the first quarter, Caleb Evans threw an INT that would lead to another Cyclone score minutes later and a 14-0 ULM hole.
The second quarter was kinder to the Warhawk offense. ULM used 10- and 12-play drives to stay within striking distance. Evans found Josh Pederson on a 19-yard strike. Josh Johnson would cap off the latter scoring effort with a one-yard plunge.
Evans would find Jonathan Hodoh on a 38-yard touchdown pass in the second half, but simply could not keep pace with Iowa State’s offense.
Defense had no answers
Touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown.
Kneel out clock.
That was the second half Iowa State scoring barrage that put the game away swiftly after halftime.
Throw in a Colby Suits pick-six to the Iowa State defense and what was once an intriguing deficit became touch sledding.
Purdy was seldom pressured in the pocket, or while running for 75 yards on the ground. By the time the game reached all-zeroes, Iowa State had put up 714 total yards of offense.
The ULM defense would only force eight total third downs on the afternoon, allowing five conversions.
And on they move
Well, that didn’t work.
But the great thing about getting blown out in your last non-conference tilt is turning the page to conference season comes at just the right time.
My suggestions for what to do with this game and it's varied lessons are as follows:
Watch the film.
Learn from the film.
Watch the film again.
Burn the film.
Throw the ashes into the depths of the sea.
Conference season is a new day.