Q&A: Cade Kelderman on why he’s walking on at Iowa State

Fans look on as Cade Kelderman of Waukee Northwest puts up the game winning shot as Vance Peiffer of Waukee defends during a game at Waukee Northwest, Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2022.

Waukee Northwest guard Cade Kelderman announced on Wednesday he’ll be walking on at Iowa State next season. The 6-foot-1 guard chose the Cyclones over a host of other lower division opportunities, including an offer from Division II powerhouse Northwest Missouri State.

Kelderman breaks down his commitment to the Cyclones in the conversation below edited lightly for brevity and clarity.

CF: Why Iowa State?

Kelderman: “I’d say the biggest thing, being a lifelong Cyclone fan, it’s so hard to pass up the opportunity to play in Ames and play for the team that I grew up rooting and cheering for. The other big thing is just the coaching staff, they’re great at relationships, reaching out and making you feel that you’re wanted and those are the two main factors for me.”

CF: There aren’t that many walk ons that are being pursued by coaching staffs in today’s age of college basketball. How has this opportunity been presented to you?

Kelderman: “All the coaches have told me about how I need to work hard and you never know what can happen. It wasn’t me reaching out, and, (saying), ‘Hey, can I come join the team or whatever it was.’ It was them reaching out every week, making me feel wanted, like I said earlier. Yeah, I am really excited for this.”

CF: What were some of the other schools that were recruiting you?

Kelderman: “I had some NAIA and JUCO offers then some Division II, most recently Northwest Missouri State.”

CF: Growing up a fan, who are some of your favorite Cyclones?

Kelderman: “Oh, man. I feel my favorite is probably Monte (Morris) but that whole era with Monte, Georges Niang, DeAndre Kane, all them. That’s kind of the team that I grew up rooting for even earlier like Tyrus McGee, Korie Lucius, those are the guys that I grew up watching and supporting.”

CF: Are you looking forward to playing with Omaha Biliew rather than against him?

Kelderman: “100 percent. We were on the same team my sophomore year in high school, so that was good, but this past year, playing against him three times, that’s enough. Definitely excited to be on his team. He’s an incredible talent, so it’ll be awesome.”

CF: What’s your relationship with Coach T.J. like?

Kelderman: “Yeah, great relationship. He’s a great guy, reaching out, asking me how I’m doing, answering any questions I might have, that my family may have and making them feel like they want me to be a part of the team. The culture that they’ve set there, it’s something that is hard to pass on.”

CF: How would you describe yourself as a player?

Kelderman: “I am a playmaker. I get my own if needed, but also I can facilitate and get others involved. I can shoot it, if you’re gonna leave me open or go under ball screens, but overall, just a playmaker. Kind of do whatever it takes to win and just compete, give it my all and see where it takes me.”

Jared Stansbury


Jared a native of Clarinda, Iowa, started as the Cyclone Fanatic intern in August 2013, primarily working as a videographer until starting on the women’s basketball beat prior to the 2014-15 season. Upon earning his Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Iowa State in May 2016, Jared was hired as the site’s full-time staff writer, taking over as the primary day-to-day reporter on football and men’s basketball. He was elevated to the position of managing editor in January 2020. He is a regular contributor on 1460 KXNO in Des Moines and makes regular guest appearances on radio stations across the Midwest. Jared resides in Ankeny with his four-year-old puggle, Lolo.