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The Best Cyclone Performance Against: Kansas State

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Going way back for this one.

While the Wildcats have beaten Iowa State 10 out of the last 11 times (which feels like it has been by a combined 8 points in those 10 losses), the Cyclones came out on top last year, 42-38. Kansas State has won a lot of games recently against the mighty ‘Clones, but Iowa State leads the all time series 50-48-4, remaining the only team in the Big 12 that Iowa State has a winning record against.

Kansas State v Iowa State Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images

Last year’s game was a fun one, coming back from a 38-21 deficit in 10 minutes, with David Montgomery rushing for 3 touchdowns, Brock Purdy leading his first career game-winning drive, and of course finally putting The Vampire in his coffin one last time. Although there are plenty memorable moments from that game, we’re going all the way back to the Big 8 days.

It’s 1983, November the 12th, and the Cyclones are coming off of a 72-29 beatdown from Nebraska, and are currently in the midst of a 3 game losing streak. Iowa State, however, travels to The Little Apple to take on a very poor Kansas State squad.

Before there were NCAA regulations about helmets and such, teams were allowed to used more than one colored helmet. First-year head coach Jim Criner would take advantage of that in a kind of unique way. Coach Criner would honor only a couple players throughout the whole season with a cardinal helmet rather than the normal gold. Sophomore receiver Tracy Henderson had already earned his cardinal cap, but he would prove once again why he was different.

Another player to get his cardinal helmet today was quarterback David Archer. While Iowa State’s record was less than spectacular, this passing attack was considered to be among the best in the country between Henderson and Archer.

The Cyclones dominated for 4 quarters and put a whooping on K-State in front of a small KSU Stadium crowd of just 24,000, 49-27. David Archer completed 29-40 passes for 286 yards and a pair of scores. Out of those 29 completions, 16 of them were to Tracy Henderson, who also hauled in both touchdowns.

Henderson already had the Big 8 record for receptions, which he extended to 79 after this game and 81 by the end of the 1983 season. He also became the first player in Big 8 Conference to surpass the 1,000 yard receiving mark, catching and running for 165 yards this fall afternoon.

Henderson’s mark of 81 receptions in a season would stand until the day the Big 8 was no more, while his single game record of 16 catches has not been touched. Current Cyclone Deshaunte Jones has been the closest with 14 catches.