The new Iowa State football coaching staff doesn’t hide its Cleveland fandom. These guys – specifically head coach Matt Campbell – adore their Cavaliers.
“I am diehard in every way, shape or form,” Campbell said. “Whether if it is the Cavs, the Indians or the Browns, it’s been a tough life growing up so we are relishing any success that we can possibly have.”
Campbell, a native of Massillon, Ohio (which is an hour drive from Cleveland), joined co-host Ross Peterson and on Tuesday’s installment of 1460 KXnO’s “Sports Fanatics” to analyze the NBA Finals. The series will resume with Game 6 on Thursday night in Cleveland.
The leader of Iowa State football is a unabashed Cavs fan, but his analysis was honest. Campbell has serious drawbacks about his team.
“I will say I have had mixed emotions in this series a little bit and I have heard you talk a little bit about it too, Chris,” Campbell said. “I appreciate the Warriors in terms of how they play. They are 10-deep. Their guys all play really hard and they play the game the right way. And I will be honest with you, as much as I am a Cavs fan, I can say that I’m not always the biggest LeBron James fan.”
It was a refreshing take when you consider that most fans are blind to the flaws of superstars on their own team. Campbell’s minor beef with LeBron is legit.
“As a coach, I look for elite players who constantly play at an elite level,” Campbell said. “That’s what disappoints me about the Cavs at times. Their level of play fluctuates. Elite teams and Chris, you being a Chicago Bulls fan know this and can probably relate to this, those Bulls played at such a consistently elite level. That’s the one thing that maybe drives me nuts about LeBron and the Cavs at times. Sometimes they play at a really high level and at other times, almost disinterested.”
What about the Draymond Green controversy, which forced the Warriors superstar to miss Game 5?
“As a coach, I can appreciate what Draymond Green brings to the table,” Campbell said. “He plays really hard. He plays with intensity. Now sometimes he toes that line at times but his consistency of what he plays with you appreciate from a coaching standpoint.”
When asked for a prediction, Campbell said that his heart is with Cleveland but brain is picking the Warriors.
“It’s going to be a heck of a showdown in Cleveland especially with Green coming back,” Campbell said.
You can listen to the entire interview, which includes Campbell’s passionate thoughts on his first place Cleveland Indians, by clicking here.