11-18 CF Mailbag

It’s my favorite day of the week Fanatics. It’s Wednesday! There is one reason why I enjoy this 24 hours commonly known as “Hump Day.” It’s because I get to write my weekly Mailbag column.

I am being honest here. The hour and a half I spend writing this is the most fun I have all week long. Thanks for your great questions and participation. Keep them coming. Let’s roll.

ISUFan22 writes…What is the issue with our wide receivers that we can’t get off the line and are unable to get consistent separation from the defenders? Is there hope this group can turn it around for this weekend? A potential bowl game? 2010?

CW: What are the issues with the wide receivers? I have no idea but I do think that they’re part of the reason that Austen Arnaud has been a bit shaky. Hope for this weekend? Sure. I consider myself an optimist. A true glass half-full type of guy. So yeah, they can turn it around. I don’t see it happening, but anything is possible. I really think that the loss of “Money” has hurt more than people are talking about. We have all off-season to hash that out though. As far as bowl games go next season, I’m 100 percent on the Paul Rhoads bandwagon. I really think that Iowa State will get six wins again next year and go bowling. We’ve got a new bowl lineup in the Big 12 Conference for 2010. My prediction? THE NEW YORK YANKEES BOWL BABY!!!!! Whoo hooo. I predict a game in New York against Rutgers. Put it on the board.

– Realistic bowl destination/match-up you most want? Least want (beggars can’t be choosers, but list one for fun)?

CW: I want to go to Phoenix so the Clones can beat up on Minnesota or some other Big 11 team. Least want? Detroit against a MAC opponent in the Little Caesars Pizza Pizza Bowl. If that game weren’t the day after Christmas, it wouldn’t be that big of a deal. But something about the holidays in Detroit makes me queasy.

– Banks runs extra in practice for these non-stop stupid personal foul penalties, right?

CW: I don’t know how I feel about that. Part of the reason this defense has had this much success this season is because they are nasty. Yeah, Banks has made some real bonehead moves but he’s really aggressive and just doesn’t know when to stop. He’ll learn. I would assume he’s been disciplined but have no clue to be honest with you.

– Just how healthy is ARob now? Close to 100%?

CW: Coach Rhoads said in his Monday presser that he is pretty much 100 percent. That was great to hear.

– Call your shot, name the marque, big upset win that ISU MBB gets this season.

CW: Pretty simple here. Texas comes to town on Jan. 13. Mark it down.

247cy writes…Lucca Staiger can light it up from 3pt land; with a record TEN 3’s versus Drake Tuesday night…is it legal for him to shoot free throws from beyond the arc?

CW: I think that you meant that as a joke but it actually is a fairly decent question. I contacted a friend of mine who does officiating to get to the bottom of this. His name is Brent Blum. While watching any sort of sporting event with Blummer, I tend to always get annoyed. The guy spends more time watching the refs than he does the game. Blum is notorious for saying "good call" anytime anybody in the crowd gets a little amped up. Blum tells me that Staiger could back up as much as he wanted to, as long as he is still in the arch. So there you go. Lucca could shoot free throws just in front of the 3-point line if he wanted to.

I love Craig Brackins as much as the next Fanatic, but Scott Christopherson is my favorite player on this year’s team. He is everything I thought Jake Sullivan should have been but never was. Dude can handle the ball, dude can shoot, and most importantly, dude can CREATE. Is he your favorite player? If not, a-la the Pete Carroll-Jim Harbaugh post-game exchange from last Saturday… what’s your deal man?

CW: I wrote like two weeks ago after exhibition game number one the Scotty C. was probably my favorite Clone. Scotty C. has this claim right after I interviewed him on Media Day. Love the guy. So yes, you are spot on. He’s my favorite current player.

I think Roy Williams is a weasel and has a horse face. The average adult human has 32 teeth. When ol’ horse face came up on the Skype last Friday I lost count at 43, and those were the visible ones. How many did you count? Do you have a favorite ‘horse face’ to kick around for a pick-me-up?

CW: I counted 47 and a half. I was probably close to the screen than you were though so that’s why. “Do I have a favorite ‘horse face’ to kick around?” —– Wow. These are my readers. (Thought I’d drop that line for you Simmons lovers out there)

Eric Heft has an obsession with the wind at Jack Trice, mentioning it several times during the Colorado game. Is ‘windophile’ the correct clinical term to describe Mr. Heft’s affinity for the wind?

CW: I never get to listen to John and Eric during home games because I’m up in the press box. But he really loves the wind that much huh? Windophile is good. Windoholic could work. How about we just start referring to Mr. Heft as “Windly Mc Wind Wind?”

I’ve always thought spelling Missouri with z’s makes the Tiger faithful appear doltish and feebleminded. It’s the only public funded D1 school in the state for crying out loud! What kind of education are these people peddling? Were these hillbillies using the z’s before Snoop Dogg popularized dropping the ‘izzle’ on everything or is Tiger fan just that dumb?

CW: First of all, I grew up like 10 miles from Missouri. I can assure you that these “hillbillies” have no idea whatsoever who Snoop Dogg is. That’s a guarantee. When I was in middle school, I went through a phase where I thought I was a rapper. I listened to them all. Snoop, 2-Pac, Biggie, Eminem. Ja Rule was a big deal before he sold out. The good people of Missouri go through stages like that with Bluegrass music. It really touches the soul. For the record, as I write this, I’m bumping to some classic “Family Tradition” by the great Hank Williams Jr. I hear he’s a distant relative of mine.

Hindy wrties…Do you think too many people whine on the Cyclone Fanatic message board?

CW: Nope. Sure…people get a little bit nutty sometimes but that’s what a message board is. Am I wrong?

Clonefan32…If you were picking a team for some pick-up ball, would you pick Lucca or Christopherson first? What about DG or Colvin?

CW: For street ball? I’d take Christopherson just because the guy is crazy-tough. I’d probably take Colvin as my point guard just because street ball is all about one-on-one right? Colvin would thrive in the street ball game. It stinks for those guys to have me as a teammate.

Ajk4st8 writes…Did Jeremy Skype you the news that you would be the publisher of CF?

CW: No he didn’t. Jeremy actually went old school with this announcement. He sent me a good ole fashion telegram through the quality mail service we have here in America. He used a typewriter. I have the letter framed in my outhouse.

GeronimusClone writes…What’s the over/under on days until my next banning?

CW: I speak on behalf of all the mods when I say, when you get banned, it hurts us a lot more than it hurts you.

Cyclone42 writes…Do you think we’ll ever see an ISU player hit eleven 3’s in a game? (Myself, I doubt it)

CW: “Records are made to be broken.” I’ve heard that a time or two in my life. Yes. At some point in time, somebody will break the record. Maybe Lucca this year?

Isunorth writes…Can we investigate 3TrueFans to determine if he’s really on Team Barnes’ payroll? Either way, can we cancel his account so we’re not bothered with his annoying posts? At least, can we change his screen name to Lil Cyclone?

CW: Well that’s not very nice.

Wheels686 writes…Have you heard anything with Chasson Randle or Darnell Harris?

CW: Iowa State is still in the thick of things with Randle. He’s a big Daniyal Robinson fan. Who isn’t? I anticipate Iowa State to be in it till the end with him. As for Harris, I don’t believe Iowa State is recruiting him anymore.

Have you heard anything new with John Wilkins recruitment? How are things going with him?

CW: There are rumblings that Wilkins is moving back to France but nobody has confirmed that for me. I need to do some homework on that. I’ll hopefully get that done in the next week. Last I heard though, things were going very well for Iowa State.

Dualthreat writes…which bowl game do you forsee us going to?

CW: The Independence Bowl against Arkansas, Georgia or Auburn.

Cycloneworld writes…- Was the HB meltdown better or worse than you expected?

CW: Probably worse just because of how the whole thing went down. I don’t think that people had a problem with him picking North Carolina. Some of the good ISU fans I talked to just felt led on. I know one guy who drove an hour to the announcement because he wanted to witness history. Poor guy. Having said that, I don’t believe it was Harrison’s intention to mess with people like that.

-Over/Under 7 wins in FB next year?

CW: Under. Give me six and another bowl game.

-Will ISU Volleyball outdraw the Iowa MBB team this year?

CW: Of actual attendance maybe. Reported attendance, no. How embarrassing is that for Todd Lickliter?

-Who would win in a fist fight…Tommy from Des Moines or Cyclone Jerry.

CW: Maybe the toughest question I have ever been asked. Let’s go with Cyclone Jerry, just because he was an avid fan of Williams and Blum from 10 to noon back in the day on 1430 KASI.

SuperCy writes…Last week you were asked if you would jump up and down and shriek if HB chose ISU. Your response was, "I refuse to act like a little girl in public." Is it safe to assume that you jump up and down and shriek like a little girl when watching ISU in private?

CW: SuperCy just opened up a WHOOOOLLLLLE big can of worms. The honest answer is yes. I do shriek like a little girl while watching ISU or my Minnesota Vikings. Last year, during the Vikings/Eagles playoff game, I made my cute little niece cry. She couldn’t comprehend why Uncle Chris kept swearing at some guy named Childress for like two straight hours. She needs to learn though. She now knows that sports are a big deal. Rumor has it that last weekend she was running around yelling "Cyclones." That’s my girl.

Psyclone Brian writes…What’s "the feel" of the football team as they prepare for Missouri?

CW: They seemed confident to me on Monday. They should be. I really think that the offense is feeling some pressure to perform though. I can’t even count how many times I heard “we need to score more than 17 points to win on Saturday.”

Bosco writes…I can foresee the men’s bball team doing much better but Brackin’s numbers going down. How do you think this will affect Craig’s draft situation?

CW: I don’t think it will affect it that much, basically because to me, Craig has already proven himself to most of these scouts. His body is better than it was last year at this time. He’s constantly improving on defense. He’s proving to be more of a complete pro. That will help him in the long run. He might drop a few spots but I don’t see five points a game being a huge difference. The only thing that Craig has going against him is his age.

Clonecard writes…Please confirm or deny that the ISU pep band was present for HB’s presser. Was it true that more than half the non-student section left?

CW: I didn’t see Iowa State’s pep band. I don’t think that they could legally be there anyway. AHS had their band in attendance. Yes, a lot of the students left. Are we about done with these Harrison Barnes questions yet?

Clonefan32 writes…How do you feel about Coach McD’s recent trend towards picking up JuCo guys? Smart in the short run/bad in the long run? Necessary considering the type of turnover we have had lately in the program?

CW: Necessary is a great word to describe the recruiting we have seen. Look, it’s not like picking up guys like Gilstrap and Dendy was a huge gamble. DeMarcus Phillips is in the same boat. These guys are legitimate, high-major prospects. If Iowa State starts having dicipline problems or something like that, then we’ll talk. But until now, I think that this is a smart thing for Greg McDermott. If the talent is out there, take it. After all, winning is what the fan base wants right? If these guys can help you do it, why not? I think that program is set up nicely in the long run at Iowa State. There is a lot of youth on this team that will be around for a while. The future looks bright in my eyes.

Kcclones writes…Gonna get burned for asking about HB but want to know if Coach Mac was waiting on Skype as well.

CW: No clue but I doubt it.

Isufan writes…1. What’s your prediction for wins for the men’s basketball team?

CW: I will run my “Fearless Predictions” column tomorrow with this information in it. Stay tuned.

2. What’s your favorite bar on Welch Ave?

CW: I am currently working on some advertising with a bunch of bars on Welch Ave. so I will not answer that question. I know. I’m a sellout.

tec71 writes…I know you are only one person but what are the chances of increasing coverage of the other ISU sports? Obviously Volleyball is taking stage now and wrestling will later, but will there be room for an occasional feature on cross country or others?

CW: We’ll just have to see. I’ve been pretty busy with football, hoops, getting the new site off the ground and trying to get some advertising as well. If anybody out there wants to be a correspondent on any particular Iowa State sport shoot me an e-mail.

Clonester writes…Wrestling: Any word on Gallick’s injury? Got to have everyone healthy for Iowa!

CW: No clue but I’ve hear that the Clones will be healthy when the Hawks roll into town.

Clones21 writes…Chris, concerning Blaine Gabbert, how or what formations do we use to stop him?

CW: I don’t think it even matters. Just hit him and hit him hard. That’s my key to a Cyclone win. This is not a good match-up for the Cyclones.

Great questions everybody. Thanks for participating!