Monday Musings: 1-30 Edition
By Chris Williams, CycloneFanatic.com PublisherFollow Chris on Twitter @ChrisMWilliams
I generally don't like doing this, but I'm going to start this week's musings off with some shameless company promotional plugs. Being that it is the week of National Signing Day, we've got a lot going on here at CycloneFanatic.com.
--- If you consider yourself a diehard Iowa State football fan than you cannot miss our third annual football recruiting party that will take place this Thursday night at 7 p.m. at The Keg Stand in West Des Moines. Need more information? CLICK HERE for the scoop. Just trust me. Come a little early, be ready to talk football and don't miss out on the fun.
--- When Signing Day rolls around on Wednesday, we'll be trying something new here at CycloneFanatic.com. Former Iowa State quarterback Austen Arnaud, Andrew Logue from the Des Moines Register and I will host a four hour marathon chat starting at 8 a.m. Right now, the plan is to go until noon (we all have to get up to Ames for Paul Rhoads' Signing Day press conference). As Iowa State's signees come in, we'll hash it out on our front page. Be there. Even if you can't actually chat, leave the page open at work to check on how the day is going.
ON IOWA STATE BASKETBALL...
--- Iowa State University led off Sports Center on Saturday evening. That's right. For the second time in three months, Iowa State athletics have been the top story in the entire world of sports. The big football upset of Oklahoma State did the honors in November and Saturday's eight-point hoops win over No. 5 KU took the cake this weekend.
It was a big win. No doubt. But big of an upset was it? In my opinion, it wasn't that earth-shattering. I'm not taking anything away from Fred Hoiberg's Cyclones here. I'm actually giving the team a major compliment. At home, Iowa State is good enough to beat anybody. Anybody. I picked the upset in Friday afternoon's game preview, as did many others in the industry. This was an easy one to see coming...
The fact is that while Kansas entered this contest 7-0 in the Big 12, the Jayhawks were as vulnerable as any team in America to be upset. At the same time, the Cyclones were due to pull off a signature win. I don't gamble but if I did, I would have bet the mortgage on ISU at +7.
--- Speaking of Sports Center, really, how hard is it for professional broadcasters to pronounce the name Christopherson? I wish I had a dollar for every time that the Iowa State senior's name has been butchered this Big 12 season...Unbelievable.
--- I re-watched the big win on Saturday evening and this came to my mind while watching the closing seconds...I'm really happy for T.J. Otzelberger and Jeff Rutter, two men who have been in Ames (and loyal to Iowa State) since day one of Greg McDermott's tenure as head coach. Those two have toughed it out and it was nice to see them achieve some much-deserved success.
--- Here's a shout out to the kid in Cyclone Alley who painted his entire body gold and held up a sign that read, "I'm sexy and the state of Kansas knows it." --- Awesome.
--- So you're one of those chaps who thinks that Iowa State's students shouldn't have stormed the court on Saturday? Why exactly is that? Iowa State hadn't beaten a top five team at home since 1995. Lighten up. Have some fun. The fans deserved that win as much as anybody. They are the ones who have packed that building night in and night out without much to cheer about in over half a decade.
MORE HOOPS...--- Lon freaking Kruger.
I've been preaching the good word since he got the job at Oklahoma last spring. Yes. He's an elite coach and will have the Sooners back to being nationally relevant any year now.
Y'all smell what I'm cooking now?
Oklahoma's 63-60 upset of Kansas State in Manhattan was as surprising of a score as I saw on Saturday. I can't quite decide if the Wildcats losing is a good or bad thing for Iowa State, with KSU coming to town on Tuesday...Thoughts?
--- I'm starting to wonder if Texas Tech will win a Big 12 game this year...For real. Billy Gillispie's group is 0-8 in the Big 12. If they don't beat Oklahoma State at home on Tuesday, their chances of winning a game seem slim. Sure, they'll probably sneak up on somebody but Tech doesn't have much talent at all. They play hard, but it's difficult to keep a team hungry when they can't even sniff a W.
--- A couple of former Cyclones had big days on Saturday. Remember LaRon Dendy? The big man led his Middle Tennessee State team with 22 points in a narrow loss to Vanderbilt on Saturday. It's looking like Dendy will play in this year's NCAA Tournament, as MTSU is 20-3 (9-0 in the Sun Belt).
--- Wes Eikmeyer led Colorado State with 19 points in a 77-60 upset of No. 13 San Diego State on Saturday evening. The former Cyclone was highlighted on Sports Center Saturday evening as well.
A FOOTBALL NUGGET...--- Next year, the Iowa State football program could field a hell of a wrestling squad. At the 215/220 pound weight class at least.
CLICK HERE to view last year's state tournament results. Scroll down to 2A, 215 pounds. Names look familiar?
1. Kane Seeley, Perry 2. Collin Bevins, Creston/OM 3. Devin Lemke, Iowa Fallas/Alden
It could also read like this.
1. Future Cyclone linebacker 2. Future Cyclone defensive lineman 3. Current Cyclone defensive lineman
As it stands, Seeley is currently the state's top ranked 220-pound grappler.
Bevins is the state's top-ranked heavyweight.
I'm not a big wrestling guy, but this gives me more than enough reason to watch the state tournament in a few weeks.
RANDOMS--- Congrats to my friend/fellow Clarinda native/Iowa Stater Dan Winters on being named John Bachman's replacement as weekday anchor of the WHO-TV 13 news. Winters is an awesome guy. When Dan takes over in November, I hope that he stays comfortable in that chair for the next three or four decades.
--- Last Wednesday evening, I attended the new Mission Impossible movie at the IMAX theater at the Science Center in downtown Des Moines. Know this, that I'm a Mission Impossible junkie. I own all of the movies and religiously attend Tom Cruise movies. Top Gun and Days of Thunder might be my all-time favorites...Anyway, Mission Impossible movies are always intense. Watching them at the IMAX takes things to a whole new level. During the first 10 minutes, I wanted to vomit. I got dizzy. There was too much to take in. I was all out of sorts. I finally came to though and enjoyed the heck out of the rest of the evening. If you like that sort of thing, I highly recommend checking it out.