Now we know - four losses in a row to Iowa State gets you fired, even at Kansas.
It wasn’t a surprise that Kansas lost. The final score may have been a bit deceiving, but make no bones about it, the Cyclones mauled the Jayhawks.
Iowa State ran just 62 plays for 394, which comes out to 6.3 yards per play. Meanwhile, Kansas ran 83 plays for just 332 yards, exactly 4.0 yards per play. After building a 20-3 halftime lead, the Cyclones were clearly content to keep the Jayhawks at arm’s length in the second half and get out of town with the win.
And yes, Kansas had more passing attempts than rushing attempts. Because of course they did.
Kansas went back to its old self on third downs, once again converting under 50% at 7-17 (41.1%). However, Iowa State was somehow even worse, at 4-13 (30.7%).
As alluded to above, the Kansas defense got off the field on third downs, something they’ve generally struggled with throughout the season. They didn’t force any turnovers, but they kept the team in the game despite being hung out to dry by the offense time after time.
I was not impressed with the playcalling. I mean, come on, a wide receiver screen on 3rd-and-21? Punt on fourth-and-1 early in the game? Good grief. KU was moderately more aggressive than normal, going for it on five fourth-down attempts. However, the Jayhawks only converted once.
Peyton Bender averaged 4.3 yards per pass. That’s... ugly. And that’s all I’ve got to say about that.
Peyton Bender started and played the entire game. His final line: 19-41, 185 yards.
Khalil Herbert was the workhorse Kansas needs him to be, picking up 91 yards on 21 carries.
Pooka Williams didn’t break a big one, but did truck a guy, so that was pretty awesome.
Pooka finished with 58 rushing yards on 17 carries, along with 42 receiving yards on 6 receptions.
Steven Sims Jr led the Jayhawks in receiving with 71 yards on 7 receptions.
Stephon Robinson had 52 yards on 4 catches. He also lost a fumble for KU’s only turnover of the day (not counting fourth down failures).
Joe Dineen was a man lit on fire, piling up 14 tackles.
Bryce Torneden had 7 tackles, including a sack.
Mike Lee added 7 tackles as well.
Daniel Wise had just one tackle, but it was a sack.
Gabriel Rui made his only field goal attempt, a 47-yarder just before halftime.
Kyle Thompson had a heckuva day, hitting 5 punts for a 45.8 average.