LAS VEGAS — After two lackluster offensive performances in its first two games, No. 14 Iowa State flew into Las Vegas with a sense of urgency.
The Cyclones are flying back to Ames, Iowa, with some pep back in their step.
Brock Purdy completed 21 of 24 pass attempts for 288 yards and three touchdowns to lead No. 14 Iowa State over UNLV 48-3 Saturday night.
Purdy, who also rushed for 33 yards, finished with a 229.6 quarterback rating, the third-highest of his career.
It was a major turnaround for Purdy from last week when he was benched during a 27-13 loss to in-state rival Iowa after completing 13 of 27 passes, throwing three interceptions and turning in a career-low 68.9 passer rating.
“Coming off last week it was rough, just the way we played, our mindset and everything,” Purdy said. “My mindset, big game last week, it hurt. There was no joy, no excitement, no sense of urgency.
Iowa State (2-1) finished with 486 yards of offense and 7.59 yards per play, scoring on eight of its 11 possessions, including six touchdowns.
Breece Hall, who rushed for 69 yards in each of Iowa State’s first two games, rushed for 70 of his 101 yards in the first quarter to lead the Cyclones’ rushing attack. Hall scored two touchdowns.
Wide receiver Xavier Hutchinson, who entered the game with 110 total receiving yards this season, had 10 receptions for 133 yards and two touchdowns.
As efficient as Iowa State’s offense was while Campbell had his starters in the game, the defense was just as suffocating after entering the game ranked eighth with 224 yards allowed per game.
UNLV (0-3) was held to 23 yards on 18 plays in the first half and finished with 130 yards for the game.
“I’ll continue to say our defense is the heart and soul of this team,” Purdy added. “They got a bunch of stops, they’re awesome, they’re lights out.”
UNLV freshman Cameron Friel and junior Tate Martell split time at quarterback, both seeing action for the first time as Rebels. Friel was 7 for 12 for 55 yards with one interception, while Martell finished 2 of 6 for 27 yards.
Running back Charles Williams had 46 yards rushing on 19 attempts.
“The challenge we’ve got is to see if our guys can come and compete and believe that they can find some matchups in there,” UNLV coach Marcus Arroyo said. “This week, another challenge versus an elite team. Our guys are resilient, they keep fighting. They do, they fight, they care about each other, they care about losing.”
Iowa State set the tone by working methodically to score on its first two drives of the game.
UNLV dropped to 0-9 since Arroyo took over the program in 2020, with the Rebels being outscored 348-150 collectively – an average final of 38.6-16.6.
Hall increased his school-record and nation-leading streak to 15 consecutive games with a rushing TD, which also tied the Big 12 record, set by Missouri quarterback Corby Jones from 1997-98. Purdy, meanwhile, became Iowa State’s all-time leader in total yards with 10,638. The previous high was Bret Meyer, who had 10,421 yards from 2004-07.
Iowa State: In their last seven games dating to 2020, the Cyclones have allowed just 25 points in the second half (excluding non-offensive TDs) and just one touchdown. The Rebels finished with three points in the second half.
UNLV: The Rebels started a different quarterback for the third straight game. UNLV started TCU-transfer Justin Rogers in its season-opener against Eastern Washington. He was replaced late in the third quarter by redshirt freshman Doug Brumfield, who started last week at Arizona State. Brumfield did not dress Saturday.
Iowa State: At Baylor on Saturday afternoon.
UNLV: At Fresno State on Friday night.
This is the pregame story
LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – The UNLV Rebels have a tough opponent to try to snap their 8 game losing streak. 14th ranked Iowa State comes to Allegiant Stadium on Saturday night. The Rebel losing streak dates back to the 2020 season when the Rebels went 0-6 under first year coach Marcus Arroyo.
UNLV REBELS (0-2/0-0 Mountain West)
#14/14 Iowa State (1-1/0-0 Big 12)
DATE: Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021
KICKOFF: 7:36 pm PT
SITE: Allegiant Stadium (65,000/Artificial Turf), Las Vegas
TV: CBS Sports Network (Rich Waltz, Aaron Taylor & Jenny Dell)
RADIO: ESPN 1100 AM & 100.9 FM (Russ Langer, Caleb Herring & Steve Cofield)
ONLINE: Live Stats at www.unlvrebels.com
TICKETS: Visit unlvtickets.com or call (702) 739-FANS
UNLV (0-2) returns to Allegiant Stadium to host No. 14 Iowa State (1-1) Saturday night in the first of seven Rebel games this fall to be televised by CBS Sports Network … The Cyclones are the 10th-highest ranked team to take on the Rebels in Las Vegas and the highest-ranked opponent here since No. 13 UCLA traveled to Sam Boyd Stadium in 2015 … Both teams come in after having dropped games to ranked opponents as UNLV fell 37-10 at then-No. 23 Arizona State and ISU lost to 10th-ranked Iowa 27-17 in Ames … In a scheduling quirk, UNLV also hosted Iowa State immediately after playing at ASU in 2008 … UNLV’s Super Senior RB Charles Williams moved into third place on the team’s career rushing list in Tempe … The Chuck Wagon heads into this week with the most career net rushing yards gained on the FBS level (3,152) among all current players. Two current FBS players (Liberty’s Joshua Mack and Hawai’i’s Calvin Turner) have more career rush yards than Williams but a majority of them were gained on the FCS level before transferring to their current schools.