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Blythe spirit: Receiver powers Cyclones' rout of A&M

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Todd Blythe was so good against
Texas A&M on Saturday, he was making touchdown catches with one
hand.

The Iowa State sophomore set a school record with four touchdown
receptions to lead the Cyclones' 42-14 rout of the Aggies. Blythe
caught a career-high eight passes for 214 yards, the second highest
single-game mark by an Iowa State receiver. His four TD catches was
also a record for a Texas A&M opponent.

"I've been waiting for a day like that," said Blythe, who
caught four passes in last week's 37-10 win over Oklahoma State.
"Last week really helped in getting my confidence back. Obviously,
this game did too."

His best highlight came early.

The Cyclones drove to the Aggies' 9-yard line in the first
quarter when Bret Meyer lofted a pass to Blythe in the corner of
the end zone. With his right hand pushing away cornerback Brock
Newton, Blythe pulled down the ball in his left, foreshadowing the
way the Cyclones toyed with the Aggies' defense all day.

"I didn't think he caught it at first," said Meyer. "I'm sure
it will look good on film."

Meyer went 20-of-32 for 371 yards and four touchdowns, and
Stevie Hicks rushed for 122 yards and two more scores as the
Cyclones (5-3, 2-3 Big 12) beat the Aggies for the first time in
eight meetings.

Iowa State has won two in a row after three straight league
losses, two of them in overtime. The Cyclones were in a similar
spot last season, losing their first three conference games before
reeling off four straight victories.

"This time of year, you either get better or get worse," said
Iowa State coach Dan McCarney. "This football team is getting
better."

Texas A&M (5-3, 3-2), meanwhile, had a five-game home winning
streak snapped and suffered its worst defeat at Kyle Field since a
46-15 loss to Texas in 2003.

It certainly wasn't the way the Aggies wanted to head into a
rugged November that features road trips to Texas Tech and Oklahoma
and a season finale with Texas.

"We can't dwell on today," said senior linebacker Archie
McDaniel. "It's something we've got to get through, we've got to
live with."

The Cyclones manhandled A&M's league-worst defense all day,
piling up 549 yards and converting 11 of 18 third downs. The
yardage total was the second-highest on the road in Iowa State
history.

"This was a great day for Iowa State," said McCarney. "We
left no doubt who the better team was."

Hicks started the Cyclones' first drive with a 10-yard run, and
Blythe capped the march with his nifty catch.

The Aggies got more than half their rushing yards on Courtney
Lewis' 73-yard touchdown run with 1:27 left in the opening quarter.
The run by Lewis was the longest against Iowa State this season and
Lewis' longest run since an 86-yard dash against Baylor in 2003.

Meyer, meanwhile, shredded A&M's secondary from the start,
completing 13 of his first 19 passes. He threw a 23-yarder to
Austin Flynn to give the Cyclones a first-and-goal at the A&M 3,
and Hicks scored two plays later, his first TD since the season
opener against Illinois State.

Facing third-and-20 on the Cyclones' first drive of the second
half, Meyer scrambled 21 yards to spark another touchdown march. On
another third down, Meyer scrambled to his right and lofted a pass
to Blythe, who shed a tackler and sprinted for a 53-yard touchdown.

"We just did not seem to have enough answers for anything they
did," said A&M coach Dennis Franchione.

Hicks went over 100 yards rushing on the Cyclones' next drive.
Meyer found Walter Nickel for a 24-yard gain on third-and-3, then
hit Blythe in the corner of the end zone with 4:12 left in the
third quarter.

McDaniel said the Aggies prepared for everything they saw from
the Cyclones on Saturday -- it only looked like they didn't.

"We just didn't show up today. That's all there is to it,"
said McDaniel.

Texas A&M quarterback Reggie McNeal, erratic all day, drove the
Aggies inside the Iowa State 5 and even then, it seemed like A&M
would find a way to come away with nothing. The Aggies were called
for offensive pass interference in the end zone and McNeal was
sacked, bringing up third down. McNeal salvaged the drive by
zipping a pass to Jason Carter just across the goal line to make it
28-14.

The maroon-clad crowd of 86,172 -- the fifth largest in Kyle
Field history -- desperately tried to rally the Aggies, but Meyer
silenced them again and sent the first wave of fans to the exits
with a 63-yard TD pass to Blythe down the sideline. The pass play
was the longest of the season for Iowa State, surpassing the
53-yarder from the third quarter.

Lewis fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and Hicks scored four plays
later.

The Aggies had rushed for 635 yards in their last two games but
were held to 126 against the nation's 20th-best rushing defense.