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    Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Hi all:

    My research continues! Thanks to all who submitted information in my original thread! This time around I am looking for more information on cyclones from the distant past (read: more than 10 years ago) and that's where you guys come in! I am looking for memories, stories and/or pictures for any of these stories below:

    Chris Taylor, ISU's own Andre the Giant:

    I was stunned to learn about this former ISU wrestler who finished his career as an undefeated two-time champion in his two years in Ames. Chris Taylor was a beast of a man, standing six and a half feet tall and tipping the scales at between 400 to 500 pounds. (He was also the heaviest Olympian ever.) He won a bronze medal in the 1972 Munich Olympics and was in arguably the most famous wrestling match of all time. Tragically, he died when he was 29.

    In the 1972 Olympics, he was controversially pinned by the West German Wilfried Dietrich, who suplayed Taylor, supposedly breaking his own neck in the process, but winning the match. It was the throw heard around the world.



    At that time, wrestling had the touch fall rule where if a wrestler's back touched the mat completely for even a brief moment, they were considered pinned. Draw your own conclusions in the video below:

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n79wBw_LJ9Y"]Chris Taylor pinned?[/ame]

    Chris Taylor was definitely one of the most fascinating Cyclones in history! Check out this additional picture of him with the most of the 1972 USA Olympic wrestling team, including another two Cyclones, Dan Gable and Ben Peterson:



    Danny Harris:

    I had heard of Danny Harris beating the legendary hurdler Edwin Moses in the 400m hurdles, but I didn't appreciate how good he was in his own right. Not only did Harris end Moses' 10 year winning streak in the 400m hurdles in 1987, Harris also won a silver medal in the 1984 Olympics (Moses took gold) and lost the 1987 World Championships in Rome to Moses by .02 of a second after having lost to him earlier in the year.

    Danny Harris and Edwin Moses


    Here are some more Cyclones, feel free to expand on any of these further:

    Nawal El Moutawakel--- she was a female hurdler who went on to win gold in the 400m hurdles at the 1984 Olympics, becoming the first Muslim African female champion ever. She is currently the chairwoman of the IOC.

    Jamaal Tinsley--- any stories of his Rucker Park days? His nickname in Brooklyn was "Mel Mel the Abuser".

    ISU's 1957 men's basketball upset of #1 Kansas where ISU's "Roland Rocket" Gary Thompson outscored KU's "Wilt the Stilt" Wilt Chamberlain 20 to 19.

    Seneca Wallace--- does anyone have a picture of Seneca scoring the final TD that was called out on the 1 yard line against Florida State in Kansas City?

    Hilton's "Floor Shaking" Game where Oklahoma State's best free throw shooter bricked his two shots to preserve ISU's one point win.

    Dirty Thirty, ISU's 1959 football squad.

    Thanks to all who can provide me with help! I am also open to any additional stories or pictures that any of you can provide. I am looking for memorable stories...


    Last edited by JunoSosa; 01-24-2008 at 12:36 AM. Reason: Clarifying number of Cyclones in the Olympic picture

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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Holy Crap



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    That bottem picture almost reminds me of that insurance commercial where the cabbage patch kid grows up to be a cabbage patch adult...



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    That is a big, big man.

    If that's what the rule was - I'd have to say it was the right call on the pin. Cheap, but right.

    Regardless, his opponent probably deserves it just for picking him up and taking the hit getting landed on.


    Last edited by DaddyMac; 01-23-2008 at 09:23 PM.

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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    There is a book about him. I read it a few years back. The author is in central Iowa I believe. You can find it here.

    [ame=http://www.amazon.com/Gentle-Giant-Chris-Taylor-Story/dp/1888223219]Amazon.com: The Gentle Giant: The Chris Taylor Story: Books: Lynn Marr-Moore,Harold J. Nichols[/ame]



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Awesome throw, but I can't see how that's a pin.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    how does he break his neck and then start jumping after winning



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    I think I remember seeing his picture at Beyer Hall. Interesting story.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    [quote=JunoSosa;334373]Hi all:


    Chris Taylor was definitely one of the most fascinating Cyclones in history! Check out this additional picture of him with the rest of the 1972 USA Olympic wrestling team, including another Cyclone, Dan Gable:



    Danny Harris:

    I had heard of Danny Harris beating the legendary hurdler Edwin Moses in the 400m hurdles, but I didn't appreciate how good he was in his own right. Not only did Harris end Moses' 10 year winning streak in the 400m hurdles in 1987, Harris also won a silver medal in the 1984 Olympics (Moses took gold) and lost the 1987 World Championships in Rome to Moses by .02 of a second after having lost to him earlier in the year.

    Danny Harris and Edwin Moses

    I can add the following --

    Re: Chris Taylor and Dan Gable: They practiced for the olympics together at Iowa State along with the Peterson brothers (Ben & _____). I heard the practices were quite spirited with strange sights such as 149# Gable trying to take 450# Taylor down with a fireman's carry. I believe that all four medaled (two golds, one silver, and one bronze) with Gable and one of the Peterson brothers getting gold. Four years later the Peterson brothers went back and got gold and silver but reversed from four years prior.

    Re: Danny Harris: Danny came to Iowa State as a football player (I think as a receiver) but dropped football to concentrate on hurdles.


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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by DaddyMac View Post
    That is a big, big man.

    If that's what the rule was - I'd have to say it was the right call on the pin. Cheap, but right.

    Regardless, his opponent probably deserves it just for picking him up and taking the hit getting landed on.
    Ahh, but the controversial part is when Dietrich fell backwards as part of the throw, notice how he lands flat on his back for a second before completing the throw-- that should have been considered a pin, i.e. he pinned himself.

    cj0227-- thanks for the book info.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    [quote=IsUaClone2;334488]
    Quote Originally Posted by JunoSosa View Post

    Re: Danny Harris: Danny came to Iowa State as a football player (I think as a receiver) but dropped football to concentrate on hurdles.
    Danny was a corner with NFL level talent if he had chosen to concentrate on FB. IMO, he would have been as good or better than either Barry Hill or Ellis Hobbs. After his freshman year, it was clear that he was world class in the hurdles and didn't want to risk a gridiron injury derailing his track career.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    I found this interesting:
    When Taylor arrived in Munich with the American team, he was introduced to Dietrich in the Olympic village and Dietrich made a big show out of hugging Taylor and making nice for the cameras.
    After the match, Dietrich admitted that he felt he could suplex Taylor if, but only if, he could take him by surprise. What Dietrich didn't know is whether he could get his arms around Taylor, so the hug wasn't a friendly gesture, he was measuring him for when they wrestled later in the games.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by JunoSosa View Post
    Ahh, but the controversial part is when Dietrich fell backwards as part of the throw, notice how he lands flat on his back for a second before completing the throw-- that should have been considered a pin, i.e. he pinned himself.

    cj0227-- thanks for the book info.
    I thought the same thing.



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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    I would like to hear about the former men's gymnastics coach. I know he still lives in Ames. He made ISU one of the best mens gymnastics team in the country. I don't know his name, but he seems like an interesting person and a person who brought a lot to ISU athletics.


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    Re: Iconic Cyclones, PART TWO (ISU's own Andre the Giant, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by cloneu View Post
    I would like to hear about the former men's gymnastics coach. I know he still lives in Ames. He made ISU one of the best mens gymnastics team in the country. I don't know his name, but he seems like an interesting person and a person who brought a lot to ISU athletics.
    Ed Gagnier was indeed one of ISU's legends. He had represented Canada in the 1956 Melbourne Olympic games before graduating from the University of Michigan. Gagnier started ISU's men's gymnastics program from scratch in 1963 and by the early 70's had built it into a dominant force with national championships in 1971, '73 and '74 and runner-up finishes in 1970 and '72. ISU's dominance was all the more impressive, because collegiate gymnastics were at their peak with over 170 programs nationwide.

    More noteworthy was his positive attitude and trademark "Hi everyone, it's going to be a great day." Interestingly, Ron Gallimore, one of Gagnier's standout gymnasts at ISU, was the first African-American to qualify for a U.S. Men's Gymnastic team in the 1980 Moscow Olympics; however, he could not compete due to the U.S. boycott. Additionally, Ron was the first person to score a 10.0 in NCAA gymnastic competition with a perfect vault. (Additionally, Ron's father was a star running back for the Chicago Bears.) A picture of Ron is below-- check out those massive deltoids!



    Thanks for providing the impetus for me to research ISU's gymnastics history!



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