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  1. #1
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    Twister Sisters...what's next?

    I heard this morning Jess was going to transfer. Waited for the presser and that was confirmed. I am definitely going to miss her and wish her the very best. I have her pink jersey from last year hanging on my wall and she always has been one of my favorites. The whole thing has reached a fevered pitch about what is happening. There are rumors of other transfers (none that are confirmable even in a remote way). There are raging posters wanting Bill's head because you can't do what he does. There are calmer heads that are looking at the bigger picture and believe there are numerous things in play here (pressure to win, change in the players personalities, Bill's health, etc.). I'm with the later group. Let's talk about those things.

    Health - I don't think that Bill would ever use his cancer/treatment as an excuse for anything. The man could easily have taken the season off and didn't. He is committed to this program and university! The other side of it is wondering how the treatments are impacting him personally. After doing a little research on the side-effects of radiation therapy, my uninformed guess is that he would be suffering from fatigue and perhaps some skin irritation. There is nothing out there talking about impact on personality directly from radiation. Fatigue could impact it, frustration over no voice could impact it, radiation would not.

    Bill's Performance - one of the problems Bill has created through success is the expectation of more success. It has forced him to change the type of recruit he is going after. We've seen it in this year's freshman class. The game is switching from the slower/finesse he is used to into a more physical, fast paced athletic game. The days of seeing a graceful Angie Welle running the floor may be over. Like it or not, it's the teams that beat you up like ATM that are going to thrive because the NCAA lets them get away with it. The pressure alone to get the high level recruits and the impact of losing some like Greenfield has to be immense. This year ISU is hosting the 1st and 2nd rounds of the tournament while Des Moines has the next two. Pressure to be at those sites is a constant. Add to it that the Big-12 is by far the toughest conference in the country and you have a pot boiling over. The final piece of the performance puzzle is that Bill strives for perfection. The Iowa State way. He wants hard work in practice. He wants hard work in academics. He wants 100% on the court. His entire career he has a zero tolerance "rule" when it comes to mistakes. Good or bad, that is the way he is and that is why ISU is a premiere program.

    Player personalities - This ties in with recruiting. To get the "better" player you have to go to the AAU circuit. Many of these players have been babied and built up to believe they are the second coming of Michael Jordan. Their parents coddle them. They are very different from the blue collar players we've had in the past. These new players believe they are stars and have been allowed to take plays off when they are on the court for that reason. A coach would never dare pull the star off the court! That is very much at odds with Coach Fennelly's beliefs and style. Some things are going to have to change for this to mesh. One option is for the fan base to be happy with mediocre teams (which Bill will not be happy with). Personally, I believe there is going to have to be a meeting in the middle of coach adjusting to his players and the players realizing they are on a scholarship at Iowa State and need to get with the program. Players have to realize that playing in a premiere program like ISU's is very high pressure and need to be prepared to deal with it. It's not for everyone.

    The radical fringe - there are those that want Bill's head right now. Words such as "abuse" and "criminal" have been floated out there from people who get to make minute observations during a game and believe they know it all from those momentary observations. Well folks, we don't know what goes on in the locker room, the office, outside of school, etc. We do know what ISU allows us to glimpse in lockeroom videos, senior night speeches, etc. There is more that we don't know than what we do know. Every interaction I've had with Coach and the players indicates that he cares very, very deeply for his players. They care for him in return. Some ladies can't handle his style of coaching and that's ok. They don't have to be here. Some fans don't like his style of coaching. That's ok too. They don't have to go to the games. To me, the buck stops here thing is with the Women's AD - Calli Sanders. She has the responsibility to oversee the women's programs and if she feels Bill is out of line she will do something about it. I think this would have a very different perspective if it were a woman doing what Bill does. Bottom line - if you don't like it don't go to the games, email the women's AD about why and stop gripping about it.

    The worst case scenario right now? More transfers. If Bill has a rebellion on his hands and loses key players from the team then everything goes out the window and all hell could break loose. Keep in mind...that is the worst case scenario. The only reason I say that is because he already lost most of one recruiting class. To lose another would be disastrous to the program and right or not, could lead to finger pointing as to why they left. Too many outside the program believe the lost class was all about Bill's coaching style and they would be wrong to think so. That is just coincidence. Some yes, all no.

    Best Case Scenario - the team pulls together and creates a cohesive group that makes a bang in the conference and again qualifies for the tournament. This is a very young team and just got younger with this loss. The bench is now one person less deep. Prins needs to step up. Brin needs to become a junior as a freshman (talk about pressure) and really perform at a high level. Ellis needs to be ready to spell Pop more often. The players need to find a way to get healthy during this grueling January. The best find a way to rise to the top and this tough season will allow an opportunity to do that. This obviously is what I'm hoping to see.

    All the above is purely my opinion and obviously will be debated on these boards.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Good post. I wish Bill the best and I hope he can find a balance between motivating his players and maintaing the type of behavior expected of a prominent individual associated with ISU.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Lets see if I'm following you - you're suggesting Schroll was coddled and not with the program?



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    No debating here. You hit it on the head when you said both Bill and the players need to change or adapt in my terms. As is usual in these instances, nobody is wholly right and nobody is wholly wrong; this is another harshly learned lesson.


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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clonefan32 View Post
    Good post. I wish Bill the best and I hope he can find a balance between motivating his players and maintaing the type of behavior expected of a prominent individual associated with ISU.
    Did we all forget that BF won Gold this summer at the USA Women's World University Games as Head Coach?! He didn't earn that honor treating girls badly. I think there's a lot going on that we don't know about. And we all have to move on.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by Row55 View Post
    Lets see if I'm following you - you're suggesting Schroll was coddled and not with the program?
    Geesh...reread the post. I didnt make any suggestions like that at all. I as rearing to the type of kids that are CURRENTLY being recruited by the premiere programs. It was a generality and not pointed at any one person.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by CYko4ISU View Post
    Did we all forget that BF won Gold this summer at the USA Women's World University Games as Head Coach?! He didn't earn that honor treating girls badly. I think there's a lot going on that we don't know about. And we all have to move on.
    Bingo.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    the problem with this transfer that it appens to be a JR that is hardnosed and works hard on the floor.

    something is amiss.


    Carrying the banner for ISU.


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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by Palmer View Post
    the problem with this transfer that it appens to be a JR that is hardnosed and works hard on the floor.

    something is amiss.
    It could be anything.
    We all know women are emotional. Anything can happen at any time with their emotions. It's just the way life is.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    I'm not worried. Bill has been consistent with how he runs his program and this is not the first time someone has transferred from the program. If anyone has paid attention to this program over the years Bill's emotion on the sideline is nothing new and you'd know the players love him because he motivates them to be the best they can.

    The man came to Ames and took over a non-existent program that maybe had 50 people a game and turned it into a program people care about now, consistently makes the NCAA tourney, and has one of the top attendance numbers in the nation. Hard to question the man when the results speak for itself. I can bet you that you'll have a hard time finding ex players that would have nothing good to say about coach so this shouldn't be a red flag at all. Coach said it best, if everyone on the team played as hard as Poppens does there is enough talent on this team to be a pretty good team this year. Hard to argue with that when you see the talent someone like Prins has yet she shies away from contact despite usually being the biggest player on the floor most games. If you put her talent and Poppen's toughness together you'd have one helluva player.

    I'm not worried about this Schroll situation at all. If it was one of the more prominent players like Poppens or someone from past seasons like Lacey or Bolte that left like this I would have been worried but this team will move on and succeed despite the loss of Schroll.


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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by acoustimac View Post
    Geesh...reread the post. I didnt make any suggestions like that at all. I as rearing to the type of kids that are CURRENTLY being recruited by the premiere programs. It was a generality and not pointed at any one person.
    OK. I actually read it a couple of times before posting, thought you were commenting WRT Schroll rather than kids in general.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by CYko4ISU View Post
    It could be anything.
    We all know women are emotional. Anything can happen at any time with their emotions. It's just the way life is.
    People are emotional period. Plenty of guys would get upset with being spoken to the way BF sometimes talks to players.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by Row55 View Post
    People are emotional period. Plenty of guys would get upset with being spoken to the way BF sometimes talks to players.
    I'm not saying the way he spoke to her was okay. But anything could have happened before the game in her personal life. Anything could have happened at practice. And the way he spoke to her could have brought it out. ANYTHING. So for us to put all of this on BF is wrong. It shouldn't be any one person's fault. None of us know what's really going on.



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    First of all, I have an incredible amount of respect for BF and the WBB program here at ISU. There is no debate that BF has elevated this program to the national stage. There is also no debate how he has filled Hilton seats that nearly rivals our MBB program. Truly, unbelievable accomplishments.

    I also have apprceciated his no nonsense, fiery and passionate behavior he has displayed over the years. I have personally watched players play at a level that was beyond their natural talents - fueled by the coach who believed in them. And yes, I believe BF cares about this players.

    And lastly, I want to see BF fulfill the lifetime contract that he so deserved. He is a great coach, albeit ferociously demanding, that can continue to bring this University accolades and accomplishments from our WBB program.

    However, this is a BAD day for our program. Not for this one transfer, but for the haze that is surrounding it. There is no spin. BF crossed the line of professional behavior Thursday night, and we have a casualty. A good kid, a good player and good family GONE.

    Yes, transfers are common in college athletics. And yes, you better have thick skin, and a tough demeaner to handle being an athlete in todays ultra competitive world of college athletics (I still hear my coaches screaming 25 years later!). Nothing new here...

    But...I have been ever increasingly worried about BF courtside demeaner. When he grabbed a players jersey violently and almost threw her into the bench last year I was shocked to say the least. The apparent head butt left me speechless. The verbal berating last week left me disheartened.

    Again, I'm not looking for anybody's head, anybody's excuse or anybody's apology. I'm only saying as an alumni, booster and season ticket holder this is a BAD day for our WBB program. I hope we have no other fallout from this incident or similar experiences in the future (transfers will happen - hopefully not like this).



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    Re: Twister Sisters...what's next?

    Quote Originally Posted by CYko4ISU View Post
    Did we all forget that BF won Gold this summer at the USA Women's World University Games as Head Coach?! He didn't earn that honor treating girls badly. I think there's a lot going on that we don't know about. And we all have to move on.
    It would be very stupid to not be on your best behavior in front of highly ranked high school players.

    He would have to be drunk to use his lockerroom talk in front of them. It would be a sure way to scare off a potential recruit.



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