ISU was the only team to beat the Cowboys a year ago, essentially ending their hopes for a spot in the national title game.
For some Cowboys, the loss has been both haunting and a motivator.
For others, revenge isn't a factor.
“I wasn't there. I didn't play,” said offensive lineman Jonathan Rush, who missed last year's game with an injury. “This is my team. But I don't have that taste in my mouth. I'm just going out there to play.”
MONKEN FINDS POSITIVE IN BALL SECURITY
OSU's offense struggled Saturday at Kansas, scoring just 20 points on a day when Joseph Randle and the running game couldn't get going, and J.W. Walsh had problems accurately throwing the ball down the field.
The biggest positive? Offensive coordinator Todd Monken said taking care of the football, especially in poor weather conditions, ranked high.
And that's been a trend through the last three games. Since turning the ball over four times against Arizona in Week 2, the Cowboys have not fumbled, while Walsh has thrown two interceptions. Overall, OSU is tied for 37th in the nation with nine turnovers lost this season.
“That's how you win games,” Monken said. “If you don't turn it over, you at least have a chance. In three games, we haven't put it on the deck. For our guys, it's a heck of a little run. I know it doesn't seem like much to the outside world, but it's good for us.”
Randle's ball security is an especially positive development. After Arizona, he had lost five fumbles in his last six games and was gaining a bit of a reputation as a fumbler. At least for the time being, it seems he has corrected those issues, after losing no fumbles in the first 22 games of his Cowboy career.