AMES, Iowa – It poured in Ames on Saturday in Jack Trice Stadium – just not the kind the meteorologists predicted.
While the rain and lightning stayed away, Iowa State’s offense poured on the points against Louisiana-Monroe led by quarterback Brock Purdy who had a record-breaking day for the Cyclones in their 72-20 evisceration of the Warhawks.
Brock Purdy broke Seneca Wallace’s single-game total offense record with Wallace in the stadium as he was inducted to Iowa State’s Hall of Fame.
Purdy had 510 yards of total offense in three quarters – Wallace’s record was 493. Purdy had 435 yards passing and three passing touchdowns, as well as 75 yards rushing and three rushing touchdowns.
“I’m just so grateful to Seneca because he has really been such a huge piece of our building process here,” Coach Matt Campbell said. “He came back and talked to our football team in year one. Then he was present around some of these guys this year. Now, he’s a beacon of hope for Brock Purdy and Re-al Mitchell.
"He set a gold-standard here of what excellence looks like at the quarterback position. It makes it really special. It was a huge honor for him to be inducted today and I’m just glad we could represent him well with the guy in that No. 15 jersey today.”
Purdy also became the first player in Big 12 history to pass for 400 yards, three passing touchdowns and three rushing touchdowns.
Purdy was six yards away from breaking the school record for passing yards in a game.
Given his final statline and the huge blowout, it’s hard to believe that the day started off as bad as it could have for Purdy.
On Iowa State’s first offensive play of the game, he threw an interception. In the second series, there was a botched handoff by Purdy.
“I was a little frustrated, I’m not going to lie,” Purdy said. “But I knew it was a long game and that we were going to bounce back. We all knew we were going to be fine.”
It’s that mentality that he believes he’s going to bounce back is what Campbell loves about his sophomore quarterback.
“Brock’s got great poise and I think that’s the thing I really do appreciate about him is his ability to just continue to navigate the present and not get wrapped up in either what happened in the past or what’s coming in the future,” Campbell said. “You say, ‘What makes Brock a really talented football player?’ Those are the qualities that probably embody him the best, his ability to be present in the moment.”
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Purdy distributed the ball all over the field. Nine different receivers had caught, and no receiver had more than five.
Receivers Tarique Milton and Deshaunte Jones each had 70-plus-yard receptions that went for touchdowns. Jones’ 84-yard touchdown catch set a new career-long for him.
“They’re the ones making plays, all I have to do is get the ball to them,” Purdy said.
While Purdy downplayed his game and gave all the credit to his receivers, his receivers gave all the credit to him.
“The thing about him is he’s always going to get better, and better, and better,” Jones said. “He’s still young, he’s still a sophomore. The talent is through the roof with that guy. He controls his destiny.
“That guy’s special. He has all the qualities to be one of the best players to ever play at Iowa State. He’s going to continue to get better and I can’t wait to see his progress.”
Milton said Purdy is “The coldest quarterback he’s ever seen.”
On top of his tremendous day throwing the football, Purdy also ended the day as Iowa State’s leading rusher.
Iowa State had eight different guys get carries – including Purdy.
“We knew our offense could click this year,” Purdy said. “Last year with David and Hakeem, we knew the ball was going to them. Now, everybody can make a big play.
"It’s great to have anybody on the field be a threat, and we saw that today.”
It’s that balanced offense that allowed Iowa State to put up 72 points on 714 total yards. The points are the most since scoring 81 points in 1906 when Iowa State beat Cornell College. The total yardage is a school record. The previous record was 668 against Dubuque in 1949.
“A lot of credit has to go to our coaching staff,” Campbell said. “Coach Manning, coach Gordon, those two are settling in and building an offense around Brock from spring and carrying over to the summer. That’s an area we’ve been efficient in during the early part of the season, which is positive. You better be able to protect the quarterback. We haven’t done that all the time really well in the first three years. That has been positive in the last three football games.
“A lot of credit has to go to Brock Purdy. That guy is a gym rat. He’s here as much as our coaching staff is studying and detailing what it takes to be a great quarterback. Certainly, Brock did a lot of great things for us.”