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    Post Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    DesMoinesRegister.com

    Ames, Ia. In the next five weeks, Iowa State's football team will tackle the most difficult schedule in the nation.

    The Cyclones face five opponents with a combined record of 18-2, including four Big 12 Conference rivals currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 25.

    "I don't think this team looks that far down the road," coach Gene Chizik said during Monday's news conference. "As a matter of fact, I know they don't. Because we don't let them."

    Chizik spent more time discussing last weekend's 36-35 loss at Toledo.

    A special teams collapse caused Iowa State to squander an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter, resulting in the program's seventh consecutive road loss.

    The Cyclones dropped to 1-3 this season, heading into Saturday's Big 12 opener at No. 25 Nebraska.

    "I don't worry about our team being demoralized," Chizik said. "These guys have great character and work hard every day.

    "They'll come back."

    Iowa State's resiliency will be tested during the coming month.

    It starts with the showdown at Nebraska's Memorial Stadium, where the Cyclones have not won since 1977.

    "The losses we've had, we beat ourselves," center Brandon Johnson said. "I think we have a good chance of competing with every team we play against."

    After visiting the Cornhuskers, Chizik and his players travel to Texas Tech. They'll return home to face seventh-ranked Texas and No. 3 Oklahoma, before going back on the road to meet No. 20 Missouri.

    Only one of Iowa State's previous four opponents owns a winning record - Northern Iowa (4-0).

    Kent State, Iowa and Toledo are a combined 5-7.

    "I look at it like we're in the Big 12 now, it's time to really start cracking that whip," linebacker Alvin Bowen said. "Not to say the first four games weren't physical...but the Big 12 is a different deal."

    The Cyclones rank last in the league offensively, with 350.5 yards and 19.3 points per game.

    They also have the worst turnover margin, losing the ball 11 times while recovering just one fumble and intercepting three passes.

    "We've shown signs that if we play the way we're supposed to, we can beat anybody," cornerback Allen Bell said. "I think the way a lot of the season has been going (nationwide) it shows anybody can beat anybody."

    Nebraska is listed as a 22-point favorite over Iowa State.

    "We feel like the three games we lost, we should have won," Bell said. "And the game we did win, a whole lot of people thought we would lose.

    "We're ready for anything, pretty much."

    Chizik, meanwhile, talked about re-evaluating his special teams personnel and wanting his running backs to be more elusive.

    He also emphasized a need for focusing the present, and not being distracted by a daunting schedule.

    "I've learned we can be a good team, and we will be a good team, when we put it all together in every phase," Chizik said. "Our margin for error is very slim."

    No. 25 Nebraska
    Saturday: Iowa State travels to Memorial Stadium to face Sam Keller, who averages 319.5 passing yards.

    Texas Tech
    OCT. 6: WR Michael Crabtree, left, and QB Graham Harrell help the Red Raiders average nearly 50 points.

    No. 7 Texas

    OCT. 13: Tailback Jamaal Charles leads the Big 12 with 117.8 rushing yards per game and has six TDs.

    No. 3 Oklahoma
    OCT. 20: Adrian Taylor and the Sooners' defense are allowing just 11.8 points, second in the Big 12.

    No. 20 Missouri
    OCT. 27: Quarterback Chase Daniel has led Tigers to more than 1,200 total yards in their past two games.

    No. 25 Nebraska
    Saturday: Iowa State travels to Memorial Stadium to face Sam Keller, who averages 319.5 passing yards.

    Texas Tech
    OCT. 6: WR Michael Crabtree, left, and QB Graham Harrell help the Red Raiders average nearly 50 points.

    No. 7 Texas
    OCT. 13: Tailback Jamaal Charles leads the Big 12 with 117.8 rushing yards per game and has six TDs.

    No. 3 Oklahoma
    OCT. 20: Adrian Taylor and the Sooners' defense are allowing just 11.8 points, second in the Big 12.

    No. 20 Missouri
    OCT. 27: Quarterback Chase Daniel has led Tigers to more than 1,200 total yards in their past two games.

    "Tough stretches"
    A look at teams facing the toughest five-game stretches in the nation:

    Iowa State opponents 18-2:
    Nebraska (3-1); Texas Tech (3-1); Texas (4-0); Oklahoma (4-0); Missouri (4-0).

    S. Florida (16-2):
    W. Virginia (4-0); Florida Atlantic (3-1); Central Florida (2-1); Rutgers (3-0); UConn (4-0).

    Kentucky (17-3):
    Florida Atlantic (3-1); South Carolina (3-1); LSU (4-0); Florida (4-0); Mississippi State (3-1).

    Iowa (17-3):
    Indiana (3-1); Penn State (3-1); Illinois (3-1); Purdue (4-0); Michigan State (4-0).

    Notre Dame (16-3):
    Purdue (4-0); UCLA (3-1); Boston College (4-0); USC (3-0); Navy (2-2).

    Colorado (16-3):
    Oklahoma (4-0); Baylor (3-1); Kansas State (2-1); Kansas (4-0); Texas Tech (3-1).



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    I think Kentucky has it just as bad. Hopefully Iowa loses 3 or 4 of their next 5 :)


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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    I hope for the best in these next few weeks, but believe we can going to get manhandled in quite a few of the games. We should be able to finish with the same record as last year. If not, I can guarantee you that these kids will be ready to play next year. They are going to learn so much in these next few weeks taking on great teams in the nation and how to deal with all the aspects of big games week after week. THey will be mentally ready for the 08 season.


    "Somebody may beat me, but they are going to have to bleed to do it."

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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    This is life in the Big 12. If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best. I'd rather struggle at times than play in a conference full of bottom-feeders. Things will get better for us, Cyclone fans. Have faith.


    Yeah well, ya know, that's just, like uh, your opinion, man.

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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Iowa (17-3):
    Indiana (3-1); Penn State (3-1); Illinois (3-1); Purdue (4-0); Michigan State (4-0).
    This is not that tuff. I would trade with them in a heartbeat. our next 4 games are brutal.



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    This is basically our schedule every year. I don't know why this is news.

    Maybe if the article was talking about how weak EIU's schedule is in comparison to ours it might be interesting.

    I'd rather be 2-10 with our schedule than Iowa's though :P



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    MANDATORY PUMP UP TO THE GROUP (since we have some negativity from the threadline)

    That's okay if we get manhandled and we take it as men.

    HOWEVER, We are not yet ready for the woodshed. We are improved from last year and we will be back better next year with an even better team through outstanding recruiting.

    We will play the next five games one game at a time.

    We put our pants on one leg at a time.

    We lose them one at a time, but with fortitude.

    We will play tough, with gusto, with pride, with enthusiasm because we are the Cyclones. They will know they were in a game after they played us.

    We will tackle with impunity, we will score by land and by air, we will make the good faith effort.

    Our backs will shine with cardinal and gold, our qbs will be outstanding, and our linebackers will roar.

    Rattle their names off prideful Clone fans! Shaggy, Bret, Ace, JJ, Allen, Snapper, Todd, RJ, Tuba, Jesse, and James. We will make you remember us.

    See you in five weeks, fans.

    TO BE THE BEST, YOU MUST BEAT THE BEST.


    Let my Fred's Posse Ride: Georges, Naz, Hogue, Bryce, Nader, Monte, Matt, and McKay.

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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    When I look at the next five opponents I see, in order:

    Hey if you can't run with the big dogs then stay on the porch.

    The taller they are the harder they fall.

    Overrated...

    Big boys don't cry.

    It's just Missouri.



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Hey.... Lets not complain or worry too much about this. We are almost sounding like Hawk fans in here. Didn't we argue about their weak schedule all summer and how if they won the conference it was because they didn't play the big boys????

    So now we are complaining about our tough schedule, but can't wait till the next couple years when our big boys are off the schedule. Then maybe we can win the Big 12 North. Hmmmmmm sounds like the same talk the Hawks did all spring and summer..

    Kinda hypocritical for those who complained about the Hawks schedule being easy but looking ahead and celebrating our easy schedule next year and after.

    To be the man.. you have to beat the man.. We have to prove something some year..


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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Ehh...Welcome to the Big 12.



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Schedule of opportunity boys, schedule of opportunity.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Those 2 losses are to USC and Okie St. too. If we could somehow win 3 of the next 5 games (oh what a dream) I would probably take out a loan and donate the money to the football team for making me oh so happy.


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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    Quote Originally Posted by cloneu View Post
    Those 2 losses are to USC and Okie St. too. If we could somehow win 3 of the next 5 games (oh what a dream) I would probably take out a loan and donate the money to the football team for making me oh so happy.
    Watch out - JP will hold you to that!



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    Re: Combined mark of ISU's next five foes an eye-popping 18-2

    The bigger they are the harder they fall...ketelmeister (and I never cheated in college)



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