Hawk Talk Daily: Random Thoughts

Dec. 4, 2012

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Random thoughts on a Sunday following a pretty good Saturday for the good guys…

Wisconsin thumpin’ Nebraska in Indy. Got to admit that I didn’t see that one coming. Wasn’t quite sure which team in red was going to come out the winner in the Black and Blue Championship, but I sure didn’t expect a lopsided victory. Hmmm.


Speaking of red: Red and white versus red and white in Indianapolis and in Atlanta in the only conference championship games that really matter as far as this college football fan is concerned. And, of course, red and white versus red and white in, what else, the (red) Rose Bowl. Go Big Ten…it is, after all, that time of the college football season where your allegiance needs to expand to embrace your conference brethren.

We’re another day closer to Iowa vs. Iowa State in women’s hoops in Carver and the same in men’s hoops on Mediacom Court. Have you purchased your tickets and selected your favorite gold-colored item of clothing yet? If not, what are you waiting for? Lisa and her squad and Fran’s and his need the the “Loud and Proud” that 15,000-plus brings to a game night. Here’s the link to order your tickets online: HERE.

Speaking of Iowa-Iowa State tickets. Have you checked out this month’s edition of Hawk Talk Monthly? You can do so HERE and when you do — do it now! — you are instantly eligible to win four tickets to the men’s game on Friday or the women’s game on Thursday, your choice. By the way, there’s a great picture of Old Glory inside Kinnick from our Salute to Veteran’s game inside HTM that you’ll enjoy, I’m sure.

Outdoor and, to a certain extent, indoor Christmas lights…what a racket. Kind of like Kentucky basketball…one year and done. Heavy duty, extra heavy duty, super duper heavy duty…doesn’t matter. One and done. Frustrating to say the least.

I was listening the other day. This time it was the Dan Patrick Show and Troy Aikman of the NFL on FOX was talking about a football reality: “On offense, it all starts on the line.” The former UCLA Bruin and Dallas Cowboy went on the suggest that a good offensive line will make an average back look like a stud. A great offensive line will make that same back look like an All-Pro. Why do I mention this? I’d like to think the 2013 Iowa Hawkeyes have a pretty good shot at having a pretty good offensive line. I also think the roster of ball carriers includes several that are much better than average. Let’s remember to revisit this topic in, say, early October when the Hawkeyes are working through the first of the two bye weeks that are on the ’13 schedule…which is available HERE.

I had an opportunity to listen to Andrew Francis break down the first half of yesterday’s game on the halftime show of the Hawkeye Radio Network. If you think Francis is an impressive young coach when you see him on the sidelines, make a point to listen to him at halftime or shake his hand at a future National I-Club event. He’s impressive, to say the least.

Outdoor and, to a certain extent, indoor Christmas lights…what a racket. Kind of like Kentucky basketball…one year and done. Heavy duty, extra heavy duty, super duper heavy duty…doesn’t matter. One and done. Frustrating to say the least.

It was Bigs Day at Carver yesterday. Melsahn and Adam combined to score 30 points and grab 10 rebounds while Gabe Olaseni notched three blocks in the Hawkeyes’ romp past Texas A&M Corpus Christi. You can read about that win HERE. You can watch some free video HERE. In the nightcap of the doubleheader, Lisa Bluder’s squad rolled past Northern Iowa thanks to a 19-point, 12-rebound and 2-block afternoon by Morgan Johnson. You can read about that win f HERE. You can also watch some free video HERE.

I was listening again. This time it was to Kirk and Brent during the fourth quarter of the Notre Dame at Southern Cal game a week or so ago. An Irish lineman fell to the turf with an injury and one of the two ABC voices noted that one of the many reasons for Notre Dame’s success this season was a by-product of the fact that they had the same five guys start every game in the offensive line. I thought to myself: “Man, how sweet that must be for that offensive line coach!”

Melsahn Basabe…you know I like the guy, a lot. He was athletic and strong at the rim on several ocassions yesterday. Fran liked what he saw of his junior foward yesterday, too, particularly his aggressiveness. “That’s what we need him to be. I don’t think he has been as aggressive in recent weeks. It’s great to see. He was alert. He was on the glass. He was driving the ball to the basket, running the floor. When he’s playing like that, we’re a better team,” said our head coach. You can read the full transcript HERE.

So it’s Notre Dame vs. Alabama for the crystal football. Hmmm. I grew up in suburban Chicago and, therefore, was introduced to the mighty Fighting Irish — and Dunkin’ Donuts – at a very young age. Go Crimson Tide. What did you expect? I’m Big Ten Conference to the core and, clearly, the Irish are (currently) not.

Want more proof of how important facilities are to an intercollegiate athletics program? Talk to Marc Long, head coach of the nationally ranked UI swimming and diving program. He’ll gladly talk about how the new pool on the UI campus has been a catalyst for some great things in his program, a program that he was a part of as a student-athlete and an assistant coach before taking over the big chair. Marc’s men’s team is in action this weekend in Iowa City including today if you’re inclined to check out the swimming and diving in person. You can read about it HERE.

Iowa vs. Iowa State on the mat didn’t figure to be much and it wasn’t for Brands’ Bunch. Chalk up a pair of points for the good guys in this year’s Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series and read about the dual that wasn’t a much of duel HERE. There’s also some free video of the dual HERE.

Lastly, have you had an opportunity to watch the latest Hawkeye Sports Report? You can do so by clicking HERE.