Collin Klein rushed for 105 yards and three touchdowns to lead sixth-ranked Kansas State to a 27-21 win over Iowa State on Saturday.
Klein also completed 16-of-24 passes for 187 yards. John Hubert added 79 yards on 21 carries for the Wildcats (6-0, 3-0 Big 12), who will take on No. 5 West Virginia next week.
"I'd like for us to have played better than we did across the board. There were times we played extremely well. I think Iowa State played extremely well," Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said. "Their fans have a great appreciation for them. (Iowa State coach) Paul (Rhoads) and his staff do a neat job, those guys play awful hard and some of the problems we had were created by good play by Iowa State."
Jared Barnett threw for 166 yards and two touchdowns on 16-of-36 passing, and also led the Cyclones' (4-2, 1-2) rushing attack with 35 yards on eight carries. Even in the loss, Iowa State is still off to its best start since 2002 when it began the season 6-1.
"This was a standard Kansas State football game, coached by a legendary coach and quarterbacked by a great football player," Rhoads said. "I thought our kids battled the (sixth-ranked) team in the country tooth and nail. We fought to the very end."
The Cyclones were able to force a Kansas State punt with just over two minutes to play, but the Wildcats were able to pin Iowa State at its own 3-yard line.
Barnett threw back-to-back incompletions before picking up five yards on a third down run, but his pass on fourth down bounced short of Aaron Horne and Kansas State held on for the win.
The Wildcats scored on their first touch of the game after Anthony Cantele nailed a season-long 41-yard field goal. Klein scampered for a first down on 3rd-and-11 from the Iowa State 35 to extend the drive to set up the field goal.
After trading punts, the Cyclones got on the board after Barnett orchestrated a 12-play, 57-yard march, capped off with a three-yard touchdown pass to Shontrelle Johnson on the first play of the second quarter to go up 7-3.
The Wildcats answered right back with a touchdown when Klein punched it in from 2 yards out, capping 78-yard drive highlighted by a 23-yard strike to Tramaine Thompson. Klein carried the ball five times for 23 yards before the score.
After a 27-yard Kansas State punt, Iowa State took a 14-10 lead as Barnett connected with Ernst Brun Jr. for a 29-yard touchdown. Brun tightroped the sideline before lunging across the goal line for the score. Originally the officials ruled him down at the 1 yard line, but after a long discussion on the field it was ruled a touchdown.
The Wildcats added a touchdown at the end of the first half to go into the break with a 17-14 lead. After back-to-back penalties gave Kansas State the ball on the 6, Klein did the rest and ran it around the right edge for a score.
Klein ran for his third touchdown with 1:33 to play in the third quarter. After pinning Iowa State at their own 1-yard line, the Wildcats forced a three-and-out, and Kirby Van Der Kamp's punt netted just 29 yards. A pair of 11-yard gains set up a Klein's 12-yard touchdown plunge.
But Iowa State came right back with a touchdown after Jeff Woody bulled his way in from two yards out to pull within 24-21.
However, on the ensuing Kansas State possession, Klein and the Wildcats added three more points to cap a 13-play, 71-yard drive that took over eight minutes off the clock. Kansas State converted on third down three times before Iowa State was able to stop Klein on 3rd-and-5 to set up Jack Cantele's 25-yard field goal.
K-State has won 19 of the last 23 meetings between the schools, but Iowa State holds a 49-43 advantage in the all-time series ... The Wildcats are 6-0 for the second straight season ... Horne led the Cyclones with seven catches for 84 yards.