It’s halftime at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames, Iowa. No. 19-ranked Texas — a 7-point underdog today — is trailing Iowa State, 10-7.
Hmm. Which is colder today?
(a) The temperature in Ames.
(b) Texas’ offense
(c) Texas’ run defense
Correct answer: B.
Texas produced only 30 yards in the first quarter. The first six drives went gone punt, punt, punt, punt, turnover on downs, and punt — until that final-minute spurt that saw Sam Ehlinger march UT down the field 75 yards in 30 seconds for a touchdown pass to Brennan Eagles that had to be reviewed. The running game is struggling, the passing game has been struggling and it was hard to point out anyone who stood out on that side of the ball until the very end of the half.
Scoring — so far
Iowa State: Charlie Kolar 2-yard pass from Brock Purdy (Re-al Mitchell kick, 10:44)
Iowa State: Connor Assalley 35-yard field goal (:00)
Texas: Brennan Eagles 14-yard pass from Sam Ehlinger (Cameron Dicker kick, :17)
Rewind: First half
1. In 10 games, opponents’ first drives have yielded four touchdowns, two field goals, two missed field goals and two punts.
2. The Longhorns, who rank fourth nationally on third-down conversions, are struggling to move the chains. They’re 1 of 7 so far.
3. Texas is going without Collin Johnson, who’s out with a sore hamstring. Malcolm Epps caught Ehlinger’s first pass. And there was a Marques Washington sighting, too; the freshman couldn’t convert a third-and-7 pass on UT’s first drive. But Eagles came on late and there have been two catches upheld by reviews.
4. Through two quarters, only three Longhorns have caught a pass.
5. Jalen Green was suspended for the first half after the targeting ejection last week. Anthony Cook got the start in his place. Green should be on the field for the second half.
6. B.J. Foster was shaken up toward the end of the first quarter while trying to tackle Kolar.
- The 47-second offense is really clicking. Down 10-0, Sam Ehlinger rattled of passes of 17 and 33 yards on back-to-back plays to put Texas in position to put points on at the very end of the half.
- D’Shawn Jamison picked Purdy off on a slant route early in the second quarter. It was his third pick of the season.
- Devin Duvernay had a really pretty catch on a high pass from Ehlinger on third-and-15. He caught it and tapped his right foot just inbounds; the play was reviewed and upheld.
- Caden Sterns closed quickly on a third-and-1 rollout on the first play of the second quarter. He stopped Purdy for a 2-yard loss; the Cyclones went for it on fourth-and-3 and turned it over on an incompletion. That incompletion was thrown to a receiver that Sterns was covering.
- Brennan Eagles came up with a couple of big grabs on the final drive of the half.
- Whoever was responsible for the coverage breakdown on Iowa State’s first drive, as Kolar somehow went uncovered in the end zone on a short first-and-goal at the 2. Brandon Jones looked like the likely culprit.
- Again, the offense (up until the final 47 seconds, of course).
First quarter: Punt, punt, punt
Second quarter: Punt, downs, punt, TD
Iowa State will get the ball to start the third quarter.
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