MID-WEEK MAILBAG: Rapid-fire topics that don’t involve He Who Must Not Be Named

I said I wouldn’t include That Guy In Lincoln in this version of the Mid-Week Mailbag after writing my own article about him last week, and I am a man of my word.

(No, that doesn’t count as including him, smart ass.)

So break away from the rest of the Nebraska media coverage you loathe and join me on a mostly-off topic journey in this week’s MWM! For this edition, I included more questions than usual but am going to try to limit myself to a 1-2 paragraph answer for each. More topics, more fun – right?

Here we go.

Cyclonepride (forums) asks: Just what in the hell am I supposed to do until September?

Enjoy another fun season supporting Iowa State baseball – undefeated for 17 seasons straight and going for 18 in a row this spring! Buckle up!

I’m kidding. Maybe yard work. Or -groan- spend some time with the people you love. Just find a way to grit it out and football will be here soon enough.

cyclones500 (forums) asks: Men’s basketball: From your perspective, what were the two most pleasant surprises, and the two biggest disappointments, in 2018-19? It can involve individual game results, player performances, overall team achievement … just about anything. Give a brief summary with each choice.

Jan 5, 2019; Ames, IA, USA; Iowa State Cyclones guard Tyrese Haliburton (22) reacts during the second half against the Kansas Jayhawks at Hilton Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Pleasant surprises: Tyrese Haliburton and the Big 12 Tournament championship.

Haliburton was expected to redshirt by most of the fan base; instead, he was one of the team’s key contributors all season and looks to be Steve Prohm‘s biggest building block for the next few years. Meanwhile, the Big 12 Tournament title was a surprise given how rough the home stretch of the regular season was.

Biggest disappointments: The losses in Hilton and finally (in all likelihood) getting a one-and-done prospect, but it not meaning a groundbreaking step forward as a program.

Erase the losses to K-State, TCU, and Baylor in Hilton this year (Texas Tech is Final Four good as we now know – I’ll allow it) and I contend our fan base would be in a much more peaceful state right now. As for one-and-done Talen Horton-Tucker, I think most people assumed that once ISU basketball got a prospect that spent one year in town before going to the NBA, it would mean he tore it up and led the team to new heights. Instead, THT had a good, not great season that was defined by inconsistency.

GetAwesome (forums) asks: With a medical redshirt requested and a redshirt year yet unused, Solomon Young will have a chance to be winning Big 12 championships at the age of 37. Name your all-time Big 12 Old Man Starting 5.

I’m probably missing a few guys from the earlier days of the conference, so feel free to add to my list if I’m missing an obvious one for those of you who weren’t in elementary school in the early 2000s.

Perry Ellis (Team Captain and biological grandfather of the rest of these players)

Naz Mitrou-Long (we loved the super senior 3sus of Nazareth)

Keaton Page / Phil Forte (same person)

Georges Niang (old man game for the old man team and I’m sure other Big 12 schools felt like he was around forever)

Jevon Carter (who entered and left college as a 35-year-old man)

allfourcy (forums) asks: Which is harder to find (get) and be able to fit into a team’s chemistry ? A grad transfer, a juco, or a sit-out transfer?

Harder to find? Probably grad transfers. Harder to fit in chemistry-wise? Probably JUCO guys, since the mindset of players at the JUCO level is all about getting to the next level.

VegasCy (forums) asks: With all the new coaches and quarterbacks in the Big 12 next year, where would you rank ISU in a way too early preseason poll?

I’d feel comfortable ranking them 3rd out of the 10 teams. Oklahoma and Texas will be shoe-ins for the first two spots. After them, basically every team has some sort of uncertainty, but I like that Brock Purdy projects to be Iowa State’s quarterback all season long from a stability standpoint and think the guys on the roster will collectively be able to account for the loss of key contributors like Hakeem Butler, David Montgomery, Willie Harvey and Brian Peavy.

Darius Bieber (forums) asks: If you had to choose another name for Iowa State besides the Cyclones, what would you think would be appropriate?

From a perspective of “have to pick a new mascot today,” I think I’d roll with the Iowa State Magic, inspired by Hilton Magic. There’s the Orlando Magic, but no school in the NCAA has Magic as its mascot to my knowledge. It’d be unique (bonus points – no one needs more Wildcats or Bulldogs) and has a direct tie to something from ISU’s history.

Cyclones are badass though. No need to change our mascot until the world gets PC enough to outlaw referencing a huge weather phenomenon that can sometimes lead to deaths.

Bret44 (forums) asks: When will we reach Peak Offseason Thread? Early May, Mid June? What do you think? Also, what is your favorite type of Offseason Thread?

Unfortunately, I see the carryover from He Who Shall Not Be Named pushing back the typical off-season peak a bit… I’ll project sometime in June. My favorite off-season threads are the ones that debate everyday things like whether you should fold or crumble toilet paper to wipe. Always tons of entertainment value in those.

Bret44 (forums) asks: How much money would it take for you get punched in the face by Matt Leo?

I thought about $100,000, but then I considered a direct shot at full impact from a man of Matt Leo‘s size could mean permanent structure damage and that doesn’t sound fun at all. So I’m with Dr. Evil on this one, at minimum.

Sigmapolis (forums) asks: What are you reading right now?

At this point in my life I’m not a huge book reader… I prefer to spend my time reading articles about sports and other various things on the internet. Not saying I’m proud of that – more of a factual statement. I’m sure that’ll change more as I age.

However, I’m technically in the middle of reading The Alchemist and it has been good. I need to go ahead and sit down one of these days to finish it off.

discydisc (forums) asks: Pickle wraps or tortilla wraps?

Tortilla wraps. Next question.

BCClone (forums) asks: When you see someone you kinda know but aren’t good friends with (like a family friend, a parent of a classmate or so) how do you say hi? Just say hello? Shake hands? My wife has a classmate’s dad who wants to hug me every time. Not a side hug but a full “sorry for your loss” type of hug. He will give that back pat and rub during it also. I now try to use my wife as a shield when I see him. He does this to other people not just me. Am I the odd one who doesn’t care for some guy I barely know giving me hugs that I won’t even give my family? I will say I’m not a hugger, I don’t even care for family or friends to hug me.

Usually I just say hello to those types of people… Possibly strike up a short conversation on how things are going if I haven’t seen them for awhile.

This “Hugger Guy” you’re dealing with is certainly the odd one here, but it sounds like a harmless quirk of his personality. At the same time, I don’t really fault you for taking measures to avoid it. He probably doesn’t realize how uncommon his sensual hugs are in everyday life with people who aren’t family. As long as he hasn’t also secretly installed cameras in your house somewhere, let him be his hug-lovin’ self.

Daserop (forums) asks: Favorite guilty pleasure movie? A movie that you know is bad, but for some reason love it.

Any of the Star Wars prequels. They came out in my prime Star Wars-loving adolescent years. Nowadays while watching I realize much of the dialogue was awkward/bad (thanks, George Lucas) but I still enjoy the overall storylines and watching the prequels is a nostalgia kick for me.

CyJeans (forums) asks: List your top 5 favorite one hit wonders.

In no particular order:

Lipps Inc. – “Funkytown

Norman Greenbaum – “Spirit in the Sky

A-Ha – “Take On Me

The Knack – “My Sharona

Sir Mix-a-Lot – “Baby Got Back

Cyched (forums) asks: When using a urinal in a row with no privacy stalls (Jack and Hilton for example), which is the right way to look? Straight forward, or straight down?

Straight forward and straight down are both acceptable. What’s not acceptable is any degrees of shift to the left or right… You’re entitled to a singular vertical line of viewing freedom. Stray from that and you instantly become public enemy number one.

ScottyP (forums) asks: You work in an office area and have to fart. Where do you go to let it out? Bathroom? (never trust a fart), outside? (if it is decent weather), or at your desk? (just don’t care)

Bathroom if you’re approaching the end of your normal PI (pooping interval). That’s definitely a situation where trusting a fart is playing with fire.

Otherwise, it kinda depends on your office area. Is it one of those modern open offices where the fart could quickly spread and KO nearby colleagues? Think of your fellow man and take your toxic gas elsewhere. Or, are you in a mostly enclosed cubical or traditional office where you can quarantine yourself and the resulting stench off from the rest of civilization? If that’s the case, let ‘er rip and hope Phil from accounting doesn’t pop in to run over a few numbers.