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Iowa State vs. Kansas Preview and Prediction

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Iowa State

Here is everything you need to know about the upcoming Big 12 game in Ames, Iowa in our Iowa State vs. Kansas preview and prediction.

Broadcast info

Date: October 14th, 2017 | 11:00 a.m. CT | Jack Trice Stadium

TV: Fox Sports Networks | Mark Followill, Brian Baldinger, Lesley McCaslin

Radio: Sooners Sports Network | Toby Rowland (Play-by-Play) Merv Johnson (Analyst), Chris Plank (Sideline)

Radio: Jayhawk Radio Network | Brian Hanni (Play-by-play), David Lawrence (Analyst), Josh Klingler (Sideline)

Satellite Radio: Sirius 132, XM 99

Fun fact: This weekend will be the battle of the long snappers, as the Wirtel brothers will face each other. Steve Wirtel is in his second season as ISU’s long snapper on punts. His brother, John, is a long snapper for KU.

 

Key Players

Kansas Jayhawks

Peyton Bender/Carter Stanley, quarterback

Who’s under center? Bender was replaced last week by Stanley. Head coach David Beaty says he knows who’s starting this weekend, but won’t announce it right now. I assume it’s going to be Bender because his style is still much more suited to what Doug Meacham wants to do.

Joe Dineen, linebacker

The Mayor leads the team in tackles with 61, 21 more than Mike Lee, who is second on the team. He also has 10 tackles for loss, 2.5 more than anyone else for KU. He’s doing his part, unfortunately the rest of the defense needs to pick it up ASAP.

Iowa State Cyclones

David Montgomery, running back

Montgomery is 4th in the Big 12 in all-purpose yards with 122 per game and is fifth in the Big 12 in rushing yards per game. Last season, he rushed for a career-high 169 yards against Kansas. Now he gets to face a Kansas team that is allowing 200 rushing yards per game.

Brian Peavy, cornerback

Peavy leads the Cyclones with four pass breakups and also has one interception and one fumble recovery on the season. KU wants to sling the ball around with offensive coordinator Doug Meacham, so Peavy should expect to have a busy afternoon.

 

Key Storylines

Iowa State momentum

This will be a telling game for the Cylcones. Did they leave Norman and head back to Ames and soak in all the accolades all week? Or are they just as focused as they were at this time last week? This can be a special season, by Iowa State standards, in Ames, but they can’t come out on Saturday with a clunker. Can quarterback Kyle Kempt keep his mojo from last week at Oklahoma? Seeing where this team is emotionally and mentally on Saturday is going to be fascinating.

Jayhawks through the air

Whoever is the quarterback Saturday has to try and take advantage of an Iowa State defense that is allowing the third-most passing yards in the Big 12 conference. Steven Sims and Ben Johnson, along with the rest of the wide receiver corps have to step up for KU. The Iowa State run defense has been pretty stout, so if the Jayhawks are going to pull off the upset, it will be through the air.

Turnovers

Not only is KU the worst in the Big 12 in turnover margin (-7), while Iowa State is in the top half at +4, but the points off turnovers for the Jayhawks have been awful. Kansas has scored just nine points off turnovers, while their opponents have scored a ridiculous 68. To have any chance at an upset, this can’t continue.

Prediction

Iowa State 45, Kansas 28

Kyle Kempt is walk-on quarterback who has spent his career fighting to get a shot. I don’t expect him to have any issue picking up where he left off last week, especially against this Kansas secondary. Iowa State’s offensive line has been suspect at times, but the Kansas defensive line, which was supposed to be a strength, has been anything but. Iowa State is back home amongst their adoring fans and their confidence from last week will continue to build with a big win against Kansas.

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