Saturday, December 13, 2008

It never ends

Sometimes being an Iowa State fan is like being in a dark comedy where you have to laugh at it because otherwise it's just too damn depressing. This week featured the basketball team blowing a 13 point lead at home to Drake. This was Drake's third straight win against ISU and 2nd in a row in Hilton. Fortunately they managed to top Northern Iowa in overtime earlier in the year or else McDermott would have had a stunning 0-8 record against teams from the Missouri Valley, his old conference. Yay!

However, the real tragic comedy comes from the football coach where somehow Gene Chizik, riding a 10 game losing streak, turned a 5-19 career record into a new job coaching Auburn, one of the more storied programs around. Needless to say their fans aren't exactly thrilled.

Quick side note. I'm equally amused and horrified at this new trend of posting videos of yourself heckling sports figures. The Stephen A. Smith Heckling Society of Gentlemen was entertaining at times. The video of the absolutely psychotic Cowboys fan screaming at Ed Werder gained points because the guy is clearly out of his mind and the ESPN guy freaking out pushed it over the top. I love how the guy is so calm when he's explaining that he's standing on the street and extolling the virtues of the First Amendment and then moments later is screaming "HACK JOURNALIST!" OK, other than being horrified at their mental state or feeling empathy for the person who is getting screamed out the videos are hilarious. I guess it's just another way the web is empowering the everyday Americans who want to point out Stephen A's love of Cheese Doodles or rant about how unfair Ed Werder is being to the Cowboys.

Anyway, as far as the actual turn of events I have to admit I have mixed feelings. I'm definitely cynical enough not to be surprised or shocked when coaches completely contradict all of their comments about how much they love it here and can't wait to build a winner and blah blah blah. Yeah, that stuff would be nice but it just doesn't mean anything anymore. No doubt that there's probably a lot more money and prestige at Auburn and you can get better players to go there which is a nice way to overcome your coaching shortcomings...to a point. It's not like it's going to be any easier to coach against the best the SEC has to offer when you were getting stomped by the middle of the road Big 12 teams.

When he was first hired I was pretty stoked because he had a great resume and he was supposed to have all of this money to hire the best assistants. There was a feeling of hope surrounding the program that hadn't been there since the collapses with the Big 12 North titles on the line. So, then he takes all that money and brings his buddies that he used to coach with back in the day giving them way more money than their resumes would indicate they deserved. Two years and five wins later he demotes both of them just weeks before he splits town.

Despite all of the signs of poor coaching (horrible tackling, dumb personal foul penalties, brutal clock management, multiple delay of game calls, etc.) I stuck with him because I believed that he could eventually get it done. There was a lot of young talent on this team, a lot more than 2 wins worth, in my opinion. Because of my mixed feelings I can't say I'm crushed to see him go. Surprised, to say the least, but not crushed. Iowa State will move on like we always do when faced with absolutely absurd circumstances, hoping that someday it will finally pay off for us. I have to kind of laugh that the program is viewed in such a way that freaking Auburn is willing to overlook a 5-19 record because, well, he was at Iowa State. Ugh, true, but that record will go down as one of the worst for any coach at ISU and that's definitely saying something.

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