AMES, Ia. — Iowa State has won 12 of its’ last 15 conference games over the past two years during the regular season.
The success hasn’t gone unnoticed by the players, especially star wide receiver Xavier Hutchinson. Although the former JUCO has only been with the Cyclones for two seasons, he has witnessed the team accomplish some amazing feats. In 2020 he was a part of the program’s first-ever appearance in Big 12 Championship Game, the Fiesta Bowl victory and a top- 10 finish in the AP Poll.
Hutchinson was a huge part of last season’s success, considering he led Iowa State in catches and receiving yards. Not to mention he earned first team, All-Big 12 honors and was named the league’s Newcomer of the Year. Now the Jacksonville native has picked up where he left off this fall, leading the Big 12 in catches and receptions per game.
He was proud to see Iowa State get back on the winning track against Texas. The six-foot-three, 210-pound Hutchinson caught eight passes for 96 yards, and he threw a 49-yard touchdown pass to fellow wideout Tariq Milton. Hutchinson credits the 23-point win over the Longhorns to an intense week of practice.
“This week was really going to show what type of team we were, were we a team that was going to fold up our tent, or were we just going to keep on pushing,” Hutchinson said. “I think we showed that we’re a team that’s going to keep on pushing no matter what.”
Everything is still on the table for the Cyclones this fall, but they’ll have to win out to see it all come to fruition. Hutchinson believes his team has persevered through a lot and always respond when the going gets tough.
“I’m so proud of this team for just always battling back, and always going through adversity the way we did,” he said.
Hutchinson knows the potential the wide receivers have and there’s a great supporting cast around the group. Despite being a bit bias, the former three-star prospect feels Iowa State has the best running back in College football in Breece Hall. He also thinks veteran quarterback Brock Purdy is one of the best players in the league.
However. Hutchinson understands that without All-Big 12 performers like tight end Chase Allen and safety Greg Eisworth, the Cyclones wouldn’t have the status and credibility that they have in today’s game. He’s thankful that those players helped build the program from the ground up, and they did it the right way.
“So many seniors, they’ve given up everything just to see this program have an ounce of having a chance to be this good,” the 21-year old said.
In his eyes, it’s only right that he gives his all in practice and game action, just to remind his teammates that they’re all in it together. Iowa State (6-3) has three games remaining in the regular season, including two back-to-back on the road. Hutchinson and the rest of the team is rallying behind each other and their coaches, hoping to make some noise the rest of the way.
Regardless, Hutchinson just wants to see the Cyclones go out on top at the end of his career, and he’s prepared to play the rest of the contests like those are going to be his last.