Weis says team prepared for the wrong quarterback

Before each game coach Charlie Weis studies the opponent learning how its roster plays. But his focus on personnel may have backfired last Saturday.

Weis gives a report on his opponents to kickoff his weekly press conference each Tuesday. But last week nothing was said about Iowa State quarterback Sam Richardson. At some point, after studying the Cyclones depth chart, Weis diverted his efforts from spending time on their third-string, redshirt freshman.

“We knew all about the kid,” Weis said of Richardson on Monday’s teleconference call. “We just didn’t think he was going to be someone who factored into the game.”

Twenty-three completed passes, 250 yards and four touchdowns later, Weis may be rethinking his evaluation process.

“Give the kid credit he had a heck of a game,” Weis said, “But at the same time you usually get ready for the guys that are listed one and two on the depth chart and he wasn’t in that mix.”

At one and two on ISU’s depth chart were Steele Jantz,who started against Kansas, and Jared Barnett. Both had been shaky as the Cyclones lost four of their last five games before coming to Lawrence.

Appropriately, Weis prepared for either quarterback to enter on Saturday. He spent time working on disrupting ISU’s schemes and getting ready to be the team with tricks up its sleeves. He wasn’t prepared for everything to backfire. Instead of running the more complex offenses Weis was prepared to defend, ISU ran basic plays to simplify the game for Richardson.

“They did more base stuff than they’ve been running,” Weis said. “We didn’t spend a big portion of the week working on the base offense.”

What Weis said didn’t backfire was the fan support. After offering to buy tickets to the game for any student that didn’t have one, Weis helped pack 41,608 into Memorial Stadium. They didn’t stay long.

In what has become typical fashion for the student section, the patrons who Weis had convinced to come watch a then 1-9 team were gone by halftime, when the score was 38-17.

“There were a lot more people who were at the game than would have been at the game if I didn’t,” Weis said, of buying the tickets. “The game didn’t get away from us because of the fan base. The fans were there and they were loud and they were into the game.”

Blake is a senior from Chicago, Ill., studying journalism on the news and information track. Read more from .

  • Updated Nov. 19, 2012 at 11:34 pm
  • Edited by Luke Ranker