Kansas defense showing some improvement

The biggest problem for KU's defense all season has been defending the pass. Only Memphis and Texas A&M has given up more yardage through the air this season.

Through more than two quarters, though, Kansas has played well against Iowa State's young quarterback, Jared Barnett. The freshman is making his second start, but has looked uncomfortable for much of the day, despite putting up efficient numbers.

He's completed 8-of-13 passes for 87 yards and run for 65 yards on 11 carries, including a 31-yard run.

Considering Kansas entered today's game giving up just under 300 yards a game, that's a welcome sign, and Kansas' offense has taken advantage, despite being stuffed on the goal line and settling for a field goal to tie the game at 10.

Safety Bradley McDougald set up the score by intercepting Barnett deep in KU territory.

That's Kansas' best performance in a conference game this season, and the latest the Jayhawks have been ahead or tied since the opening minutes of the second half against Texas Tech earlier this season, when KU led, 27-24.

Win or lose, that's a step in the right direction, but the Jayhawks' defense will need a whole lot more plays to hang on to today's win.