The touchdown seemed to light a fire under the Cyclone defense, which forced the Longhorns to kick the ball back to Iowa State after three plays. At this point, the pendulum had completely shifted to Iowa State's side. Richardson connected with Justin Coleman for a couple of completions that put Iowa State within field goal range. Then, Netten gave Iowa State its first lead of the game by booting a 41-yard field goal with less than a minute left in the half.
The Longhorns managed to advance the ball to midfield, but it looked like they would run out of time. But, in the last play of the half, Case McCoy launched a 44-yard Hail Mary that John Harris pulled down in the end zone to give Texas a 17-13 lead at the half.
The Cyclones recaptured the lead in the third when Richardson hit Quenton Bundrage cutting across the middle of the field and the Cyclone receiver took it 97 yards for a touchdown. The touchdown was the longest pass play in Iowa State history and the longest play in the history of Jack Trice Stadium. Netten kicked the extra point to give Iowa State a 20-17 lead. Texas used an admixture of pass interference calls and a flurry of solid runs by Joe Bergeron to take back the lead. The offensive series was punctuated by a 6-yard touchdown run by Bergeron that gave the Longhorns a 24-20 lead.
The Cyclones answered Texas' touchdown early in the fourth. Iowa State began its scoring drive with great field position after Jared Brackens recovered a Bergeron fumble on the Longhorns' 37-yard line. A few plays later, a determined Weberly bolted through a hole and dashed 24 yards far a touchdown, running through a pair of Texas defenders right before he reached the end zone. The strong run provided Iowa State with a 27-24 lead.