This time, it wasIowaState¡s turn to make history.
Lane Danielsen caught a career-high nine passes for 111 yards and Michael Wagner got hot in the second half to finish with 107 yards on the ground as the 19th-ranked Cyclones dominated No. 20 Nebraska 36-14.
A crowd of 51,888 sawIowaState(5-1, 2-0 Big 12) defeatNebraska(3-2, 0-1) for the first time in 10 years. The 22-point margin was the largest in the series since 1899 when Glenn ‰Pop¡ Warner coachedIowaStateto 34-0 win.
It¡s something you dream about when you¡re a little kid,Œ Wagner said. I never thought I¡d be on a team that¡d beat Nebraska. Right now, it¡s just an emotional high.Œ
With the game in hand late in the fourth quarter, many from the student section hopped over the wall separating them from the field and gathered as close to the sideline as possible. When the final seconds ticked away, thousands of ISU fans poured onto the field from both sides to celebrate and attack the goal posts.
When they bum-rushed the field, it was unbelievable,Œ ISU center Zach Butler said. I¡ve never been a part of anything like that other than the Iowagame, and to be able to do that for our fans, we¡re real happy.Œ
IowaStateconverted fiveNebraskaturnovers into 17 points and never trailed in the game. Nebraska was averaging over 250 rushing yards per game, but was held to 81 yards against the Cyclones. In all, Iowa State outgained the Cornhuskers 412-272.
The Cyclones won despite a sub-par performance from Seneca Wallace, who finished 19-of-32 for 220 yards. The senior also had two interceptions.
Head coach Dan McCarney, who beat his first ranked team in his eight years at Iowa State, said his team matched Nebraska physically up front. He said his players weren¡t going to be denied on this night he hopes the win proves the fact that the Cyclones are back on the map.
We¡ve had a lot of shots taken at us since we¡ve been here,Œ McCarney said. All I know is we¡ve brought more honor, credibility and respect back to the program today and we hope that will continue.Œ
Nebraska¡s troubles started early as Josh Davis coughed up the ball on the Cornhuskers¡ first possession and Atif Austin recovered at the Nebraska 46-yard line. Iowa State would have three tries inside the 5-yard line, but settled for a 23-yard field goal from Adam Benike.
The Cyclones got good field position again when Marc Timmons jarred the ball loose fromNebraskaquarterback Jammal Lord and Iowa State¡s Brandon Brown recovered with just over four minutes left in the first quarter. After a fourth-down conversion, and a 19-yard gain by Wagner, the Cyclones fed Hiawatha Rutland four straight times. The junior capped off a 9-play drive with his touchdown run from a yard out to start the second quarter, making it 10-0 IowaState.
But the Cornhuskers came right back, as Lord faked the handoff, dropped back and found Ross Pilkington wide open down the middle of the field. Pilkington outran the ISU secondary for the 90-yard score, putting the Cornhuskers right back in the game.
It was all Cyclones after that.
After Benike split the uprights from 35 yards out and another Nebraska punt, Wallace found Danielsen streaking across the back of the end zone for another touchdown.
They were running a lot of soft [man-to-man coverage] from what I could tell,Œ Danielsen said. It just came down to our receivers beating their [deep back¡s] one-on-one and Seneca getting us the ball.Œ
Danielsen got the Cyclones in Nebraska territory again right after halftime, when he took the ball away from his defender for a 34-yard gain to the Nebraska46-yard line. Two plays later, Wagner burst around the left side for 25 yards. Then it was Wallace who got loose for a 9-yard gain to the 1-yard line. The Cornhusker defense would stiffen though, and three straight carries by Joe Woodley were all stopped short of the goal line. With just six inches to go, the Cyclones went for it on fourth down and Wallace¡s second effort resulted in another score, extending the ISU lead to 26-7.
The Cornhuskers would run their first play in ISU territory with3:32remaining in the third quarter. Aaron Terpening broke through to block Tony Yelk¡s punt to giveNebraskathe ball at Iowa State¡s 2-yard line and Judd Davies scored on the next play.
The Cyclones led 26-14 early in the fourth quarter, when Brown intercepted Lord¡s pass givingIowaStateanother scoring opportunity on the Nebraska8-yard line.
I¡m not saying he¡s a bad quarterback, but he threw it right to me,Œ Brown said. I had gotten my hand on one earlier, so I said ‰if another one comes, I¡ve got to get it,¡ and I just got it.Œ
Wallace would make good on the chance when he rolled to his right and sliced into the end zone, sending the crowd into a frenzy and putting the nail in the coffin for the Cornhuskers.
Danielsen, who has had two games this season with over 100 receiving yards, said he wasn¡t surprised with his team¡s performance.
Going into it, I expected victory,Œ Danielsen said. I felt like we were a better team. There was never a point in the game where I felt like we were going to lose the game.Œ
The Cyclones will remain in first place in the Big 12 North for at least the next two weeks, as they have next weekend off. After the performance againstNebraska, many thinkIowaStatecould challenge for the division crown.
We¡ve got so much confidence right now,Œ tight end Kyle Knock said. We¡re on a roller coaster and we¡re picking up steam right now.Œ