Hawk Talk Daily: Random Thoughts
Nov. 12, 2010
IOWA CITY, Iowa - Random thoughts on what appears to be the final day of summer/fall/Indian Summer 2010 in the Heartland...
The UI and the Iowa City Coralville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau submitted the paperwork earlier this week required to be considered as the hosts for the 2012 United States Olympic Wrestling Trials. The event is to be staged in April of 2012 and, for my money, there isn't a more logical place to bring it that our own revitalized Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Just one person's opinion, of course. And, hey, want to help attract the attention of the decision-makers? Click HERE.
Fran McCaffery was a special guest on Hawk Talk with Kirk Ferentz Wednesday night at Carlos O'Kelly's Mexican Café: Two predictions: 1. Hawk fans are going to love having Fran stalking the sidelines of Carver. 2. Gary Dolphin is going to thoroughly enjoy sharing the microphone each Monday night with Fran during the hoops season.
Fran was upstaged by his wife, Margaret, last week. Last night, it was Jim Zabel's turn. The legendary WHO Radio sports director and "Voice of the Hawkeyes" shared a few laughs with Dolph while plugging his new book, "I Love It! I Love it! I Love It!" I was crying with laughter. Jim tells a good story. No, let me take that back. Jim tells a great story and I agree 1,000 percent with Kirk when he said, upon arrival at the home of Bruce Titus and the gang, that Jim is a walking-talking history book for the Iowa Hawkeyes.
Speaking of Kirk, he cut to the chase in his weekly press conference, pointing squarely at one of his favorite (least favorite?) lines on the box score for the reason behind Iowa's lack of victories in its last two games with Saturday's opponent. Iowa's head coach said one doesn't need to look any further than Northwestern's 9-2 advantage in turnovers. "They have done a good job of playing the way you're supposed to play and we haven't. I think we had nine turnovers and they had two in two years. You do the math. In games as even as those, you're not going to win," offered Kirk.
Burlington native, UI grad, and former Big Ten Conference commissioner Wayne Duke is among the inductees this year into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. The ceremony will take place Nov. 21 in Kansas City. Duke was instrumental in the expansion of the NCAA Tournament in the 1970s, was commissioner of the Big 8 before assuming the same position for the nation's grandest conference, and served for years as the head of the NCAA men's basketball committee. I appreciate the fact that Wayne knows my name. From where I sit, he's cut from the same cloth as Bump Elliott and it doesn't get much better than that.
For those of you who haven't been on campus lately, you might want to know that Duane Banks Field was resurfaced during the last three weeks. It really looks nice and, the assumption is, there will be much better footing for our outfielders and fewer of those right-turn bounces by the balls that do fall in play.
The "jump off the page" stat of the week for Saturdays' contest in sold out Ryan Field on the campus of Northwestern University? Has to be "Total Defense." Iowa is allowing its opponent 294 yards per game, the Wildcats 389. That, combined with the fact that NU also ranks 10th in penalty yards per game (63), should give some fans of the Hawkeyes a better chance to sleep well on Friday night. For the record, I seldom sleep well on Friday nights in the fall and can't imagine I'll sleep all that well tonight. Just one of those things that's, admittedly, job-related.
Random Thoughts is written by Rick Klatt, the UI Athletics Department's associate athletics director for external affairs, and first appears in the digital world as an exclusive feature of Hawk Talk Daily, the daily e-newsletter of the UI Athletics Department.