'We believe in Brock': Iowa State football's Matt Campbell backs Brock Purdy after fourth quarter benching

Tommy Birch
Des Moines Register

AMES, Ia. — Iowa State football coach Matt Campbell made two things clear following the 10th-ranked Cyclones' 27-17 loss to No. 12 Iowa Saturday. 

One: Brock Purdy will remain his starting quarterback.

Two: There is no quarterback competition taking place in his program. 

Campbell stood by Purdy and insisted the quarterback who has started since his freshman year will remain atop the team's depth chart despite benching him in the fourth quarter of Saturday's loss. 

Purdy, who threw three interceptions Saturday, was replaced by backup quarterback Hunter Dekkers. 

"I would assume Brock is going to be our guy," Campbell said postgame. "I think from the perspective of, 'Man, did we put Hunter Dekkers in to challenge Brock's position on our football team?' Absolutely not. I think what we put Hunter in to do was to kind of allow Brock to gather himself and really settle the game down and really try to go win the football game and even at that time in the fourth quarter, we felt like we could continue to stay in the game and had opportunities to maybe do that." 

MORE: Self-inflicted wounds burn Iowa State yet again vs. Iowa

Iowa junior defensive end Joe Evans sacks Iowa State senior quarterback Brock Purdy in the third quarter at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames on Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021.

Purdy, one of the most successful quarterbacks in the program's history, struggled most of the day. He completed 13 of 27 passes for 138 yards and the three picks. Campbell said he wanted to wait to watch the film before diagnosing what went wrong with Iowa State's offense and even Purdy's play. Dekkers, however, made the most of his opportunity. The West Sioux High School product native completed 11 of 16 passes for 114 yards and a touchdown. 

"We believe in Brock and Brock's a tremendous leader in our program and he certainly doesn't want to have the end result of what happened today," Campbell said. "He's a guy that's worked really, really hard and if I know Brock Purdy, he'll bounce back better than ever." 

MORE: Peterson: This Cyclones' offense needs to show more. Quickly.

Tommy Birch, the Register's sports enterprise and features reporter, has been working at the newspaper since 2008. He's the 2018 and 2020 Iowa Sportswriter of the Year. Reach him at tbirch@dmreg.com or 515-284-8468. Follow him on Twitter @TommyBirch.