Cyclones and Panthers prepare for Saturday's showdown
By Nick Filipowski, Weekend Sports Anchor - bio | email
Mark Farley's only win against ISU was in 2007.
AMES, Iowa (KTIV) -
Iowa State and Northern Iowa open the season battling each other on Saturday night for state bragging rights.
The last time the Cyclones and Panthers squared off was two years ago, with ISU rallying and escaping with a 20-19 victory in the final minute.
Northern Iowa Head Coach Mark Farley has just one win in six tries against Iowa State.
On the flip side, Paul Rhoads in 2-0 lifetime against the Panthers.
However, Rhoads knows UNI has a long history of success and come Saturday, they'll be lining up with one of the best teams in the nation.
"They know how to win football games," Rhoads said Monday. "You read the media printout and look at the playoff appearances, semi-final appearances, the national championship game appearances, the number of postseason honors to their players -- that game was a dog fight which we expected, we expect this one to be a dog fight."
Both Iowa State and Northern Iowa return their starting quarterbacks.
Sam Richardson earned the job for the Cyclones the final three weeks of the season while Sawyer Kollmorgen started all 11 games for UNI.
Kollmorgen, rallied the Panthers from a 19-point deficit in a near upset against 12th ranked Wisconsin last year.
As a freshman, Head Coach Mark Farley kept it simple for his QB. A year later, he's ready to unleash him.
"We were apprehensive last year that we had a good quarterback with good intelligence. We just didn't know how he would manage the game," Farley said. "So, we kept a limited package for him so he could manage that game. I think now, he has a better understanding and we have confidence in him, and he in himself. So, it gives us maybe a little bit stronger package for the first game, knowing what his abilities are."
The Cyclones and Panthers kick off at 7 p.m. in Ames.
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