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Saturday, March 14, 2015

Future champs?: Cyclone predicts ISU will end KU’s streak

Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg holds a championship hat and claps for his Cyclones after winning the Big 12  Tournament on Saturday, March 14, 2015. ISU beat Kansas 70-66 in Kansas City, Missouri.

Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg holds a championship hat and claps for his Cyclones after winning the Big 12 Tournament on Saturday, March 14, 2015. ISU beat Kansas 70-66 in Kansas City, Missouri.

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— With his Big 12 Tournament championship hat propped up on his head and a smile of the utmost satisfaction plastered on his face, Iowa State senior Dustin Hogue leaned forward from his locker and looked into the future.

During the past few seasons, Hogue has heard an awful lot about how Kansas basketball owns the Big 12. But with two straight conference tournament titles backing him and at least one victory over the Jayhawks in three of the past four seasons — including Saturday's 70-66 Big 12 title triumph at Sprint Center — Hogue said he believed the time had come to start looking at the Cyclones (25-8) on equal footing with the Jayhawks (26-8). And he was not afraid to make a bold prediction for a year from now.

“I think our team's gonna step up and even be deeper next year,” said Hogue, who joins Bryce Dejean-Jones as the only rotation guys not returning to next year's Cyclones. “You're gonna have a more mature Georges Niang, a more mature Monté (Morris) and everybody's gonna up their game another level. Next year, I'm telling you now, I believe that Iowa State will take the regular-season championship. I believe it for sure.”

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Self, Mason and Selden discuss ISU's rally and win in Big 12 title game

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self, as well as players Wayne Selden Jr. and Frank Mason III, discuss the Jayhawks' loss in the Big 12 Championship game to Iowa State, which rallied from a 14-point halftime deficit.

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IOWA STATE 70, KANSAS 66

Box score

Ending KU's insane run of 11 consecutive Big 12 regular-season titles is certainly easier said than done. But Hogue said he thought it was only a matter of time before one of the nine other teams in the Big 12 found a way to unseat Kansas.

And given the way the Cyclones have shown they can compete with KU in recent years, Hogue said he thought it was bound to be his alma mater that got it done.

“Every time the Big 12 is brought up, the word Kansas is brought up,” Hogue said. “Everyone wants to talk about Kansas all the time and we're letting people know that we can play with Kansas, we can beat Kansas. We've shown people two years in a row now that we've won the Big 12 tournament, and it's not like we won it without playing them. We went through them both times.”

For ISU coach Fred Hoiberg, that last fact seemed to be as gratifying as any part of this year's title run.

“To get the opportunity to play (Kansas) for the championship was great for us,” he said. “I think the two teams have great respect for each other. I know we do, and I think they have the same for us.”

Of course, before anybody gets another crack at ending KU's Big 12 regular-season stranglehold again, there's that whole matter of the next couple of weeks and the NCAA Tournament that lies in the immediate future.

With the tourney field coming out Sunday evening, there's not much time left to speculate or stress about who might be seeded what, or where they could be sent. But the Cyclones could not help but talk about it following their victory over Kansas, which many analysts have pegged as a No. 2 seed.

“It's tough to say,” said junior guard Naz Long, when asked if Iowa State may have stolen KU's seed with Saturday's victory. “I know the committee looks at everything when it comes to choosing seeds, but I hope we put ourselves in position to be a 2 seed. We'll see tomorrow.”

Added Hogue: “I hope so. We played (Kansas) three times this year and we won twice. We've played teams just as good as they have. We've been winning all season. So if they're a No. 2, I feel like we should be a No. 2 because we showed that we can beat them.”


More news and notes from Kansas vs. Iowa State in the Big 12 Championship


By the Numbers: Iowa State beats Kansas, 70-66, in Big 12 championship game

By the Numbers: Iowa State beats Kansas, 70-66, in Big 12 championship game

Comments

Dave Benjamin 6 years, 6 months ago

Agreed. Our SOS and RPI are better and our worst loss (based on RPI) was to K-State as opposed to ISU's loss to Tech. They're not leapfrogging us for the 2-seed. Let them have their conference tourney championship. Mizzou always seemed to think those meant something as well.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 6 months ago

They did beat us twice w/back to back tournament championships. They can certainly base it on more than one game.

I think they're wrong but I can see why they are optimistic.

Jonathan Briles 6 years, 6 months ago

Awfully damn cocky after just one game. We lose Oubre for sure and most likely Alexander. Other than that what do we lose? Nothing. We will be returning just as talented and mature a team as them, with some added and needed size in the recruiting class. They need to learn to be humble.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

Winning the regular season conference title after we've won it 11 consecutive times would not put you on "equal footing".

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

Unless you want to continue to live in the past it does.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

So the 2015 conference title we just won is what you call living in the past?

Jim Pendleton 6 years, 6 months ago

You know Mr Hogue, you might be right. That would be assuming you don't lose to the last place team in the league, and lose a league game at home, with the conference there for the taking. Oops! Once you accomplish those things, come back and talk to us.

Don Burgundy 6 years, 6 months ago

Buddy Hield last October: "I'm saying it right now, we will win the Big 12 conference" .....YAWN

Yonatan Negash 6 years, 6 months ago

Hated every bit of the second half.

Hated losing to these clownns

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

No one on these boards hates losing to Iowa State more than I do. Take THAT to the bank, the BLOOD-BANK, Senator Negash!

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

We spotted you 17 points then proceeded to take you apart. name-calling? Really? IB

Walter Bridges 6 years, 6 months ago

You didn't spot us anything Jack. I'll give your team credit for the win though..great comeback.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Hey Cry-Clowns, shut your pieholes until you actually WIN the Big 12 regular season title. Remember, you were a trendy pick to rip it from us this year, but you couldn't handle your business on six occasions.

Oh, and I hope you guys suffer the same fate as Missouri did in 2012. And I can't wait till the NCAA investigates your dirty program and exposes Fred Hoiberg for the shady recruiter he is.

Brad Farha 6 years, 6 months ago

Curious as to why you think he's a shady recruiter. He seems to be on the level. Based on comments from other coaches, he has their respect. If he were a shady recruiter, I think they wouldn't be so complementary to him (i.e. Scott Drew)

Walter Bridges 6 years, 6 months ago

Any sites to back up that claim of 'shady' recruiting?

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

What ever it is you are smoking at least pass it around. Dirty program? really? we are not the ones that the NCAA is currently looking into. Hoiberg a shady recruiter. Oh please! Grow up!

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 6 months ago

The NCAA is investigating Alexander because of what his parents may have done not the University.

Daniel Kennamore 6 years, 6 months ago

They apparently also feel so sure of themselves they updated Lawrence's wikipedia page:

http://i.imgur.com/KYMcYbm.png

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

Meaningless game? I am sure the Big 12 heirachy loves hearing that. And ISU is dumb? Do you want to compare our teams GPA with yours? I think not. You need some cheese with your whine!

Mark Hammitt 6 years, 6 months ago

Are Kansas fans really so wrapped up in their basketball identity that they have to resort to name calling and accusations of cheating when they lose a "meaningless" game? This is exactly how Nebraska fans are with football -- they take it (and themselves) WAY too seriously. Pretty nauseating to the rest of the country, I think.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 6 months ago

Just the one immature, disrespectful 14 year old on here. ISU isn't going away as long as Hoiberg is coaching them and they'll give KU a run their money next year assuming Hoiberg doesn't head to the NBA.

Brandon Dey 6 years, 6 months ago

Absolutely correct Aaron. Fred is always going to have a very difficult team to beat. It was nice playing for the championship with a hurt star and a missing starting forward. We certainly had played well enough to put us position to win the game in the first half, but our coach and team knew they had to play with poise in the second half to win the game. It only took about 6 mins. of game time to erase the lead. We contributed to that and it makes a lot of folks frustrated and emotional which is what you see here, and on the rest of the site.

Nothing surprising Mark, and it is not just Husker FB fans, quite a few fan bases are disappointed during the month of March.

Brad Farha 6 years, 6 months ago

Adam - I couldn't disagree more. There are idiots in every fan base, but I've had overwhelmingly favorable encounters with Cyclone fans. I've been to two games in Ames, and they were so much fun I'll go again.

Brad Farha 6 years, 6 months ago

Adam -- those references refer to individuals. Their fan base probably numbers in the several hundred thousand to maybe even millions (I honestly don't know). With that many people, some idiot is going to make a racist comment or throw trash or make threats. It's not like their entire fan base did it. We have our fair share at KU too.

Iowa State is a fine academic institution -- they are a member of the AAU just like KU is (and Texas in the Big12).

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Not only are they a dumb fanbase, but a mean-spirited one. But then again, if I had nothing to look forward to besides slopping pigs on some smelly farm along I-80, I'd be mad at the world too.

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

Is Kansas not a agricultural state also? Oh wait., your're are more like New Jersey? Sweet!

Jack Hoover 6 years, 6 months ago

Slopping pigs along I-80? That's 30 miles south of Ames. Where is that germane to Basketball?

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

If the cyclones become a force to be reckoned with that is a good thing. I hope they along with other conference opponents step up the level of competition. But winning a 3 game tournament does not put you on par with the team that has won 11 titles. As of the 2014-15 season, KU still owns this conference. Catch us if you can.

Steve Zimmerman 6 years, 6 months ago

That's called confidence. They backed it up. It's all good. We better get ready. ISU is only making B12 a more solid league. Let's declare ISU to be KU's main competitor from now on. Nobody beat coach Self twice like the mayor has done. I'm sure coach Self has a monkey on his back one more time.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Wrong. Rick Barnes beat Bill Self twice in 2004 - once in the regular season in Austin and once in the Big 12 Tournament.

Erin Carter 6 years, 6 months ago

It sure seems that it is becoming much more of a rivalry than the KU-Silo Tech matchup by any means!!

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 6 months ago

Easy to say it. Harder to actually do it.

Don Papst 6 years, 6 months ago

I disagree that any tournament or any game is meaningless. That is a terrible mindset to get in. EVERY GAME IS IMPORTANT!!!! Period. Of course, some are much more important than others. Every win is a win and gives you bragging rights and makes us all feel good. Every loss is a downer and leaves a bad taste in our mouth. Look at the big picture. We are trying to catch kenstucky for all time wins and stay ahead of NC and Duke in that category. So yes, every game is very important and meaningful. The KU standard is set very high. Our goals every year are win the Big 12, win the Big 12 tourney, win 30+ games, and shoot for a FF and NC. I sure do hope none of our coaches or any of our players feel like any game they play is meaningless. That would be a recipe for disaster.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 6 months ago

Bill Self's goals every year are regular season Big 12 title, Final Four, then national title in that order because that's the order they have to be achieved in.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 6 months ago

I agree Don, winning the Tournament Championship requires winning several games with little rest, exactly what is in needed to win the NCAA.

If meaningless, why risk further injury to Ellis?

Jim Pendleton 6 years, 6 months ago

Adam I agree that the goal should be to win it all. We are a highly successful program, and that should be a goal every year.

But let's understand that as much as we all want that, it is not an easy thing to accomplish no matter how good you are. Since 1952, a span of 63 years, we've only won it twice. You not only have to be good most if not all the time, you often need some luck along the way as well. Too many want to say the season is a failure if you don't win it all, and that is wrong on many levels. .

So while I agree that in our situation most of the time, the conference tournament is not important from making the big tourney, but it can be for a better seed, or a drop in seed depending how you play. Every league in America (except Ivy) has a tournament at the end of the year. By your argument, teams like Wisconsin, Kentucky, Arizona, UNC, all the mid major champs, etc etc will all be gassed for the NCAA's because they played yesterday or today. Every team is in the same boat here at season's end.

No, things like conference titles, big November tourneys, Champions Classic, etc etc, are all important in the grand scheme of things. They develop a winning attitude, and should give you a boost come March because you constantly play big games and a big time schedule to help prepare you for it. That's what recruits want and that is what our fans want also. If we finished fourth in the Big 12 every year, the big recruits would eventually stop coming. Yes the big recruits want to see a pro paycheck as soon as they can, but they also want to win titles, and they are more disappointed than the fans are when it does not work out that way.

I was as upset as anyone with the way that game went yesterday, and I want to be in the Final Four and win the whole thing every year also. There are times we all think we should be doing better. But downplaying all the other things this program does accomplish every year because we didn't win it all is very short sided.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Three national titles in 63 years.

Other blueblood programs have won more national titles in a shorter span. UConn has won four national titles in 15 years. Duke has won four national titles in 24 years. North Carolina won four of its five national titles in 33 years. Hell, it didn't take Louisville 63 years to win three national titles; it took them 25 years to do it!

Jim Pendleton 6 years, 6 months ago

Bryce and Walter, don't misunderstand me here. There are other years we could have won it all, or at least done better. Not arguing that part. But saying the other things we have accomplished are not a big deal as some would lead to you believe just isn't right. Bryce, also with you on conf tourn comment below.

Kristen Downing 6 years, 6 months ago

Is he sure Georges Niang is not going to the NBA? I, for one hope so.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

We play 18 games to decide a conference champ and then give everyone a chance to beat us. I've never liked this tournament, even when we win it we don't really gain much.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

I'm not sure why everyone hates the conference tournament. I love it. I'd love it more if KU could handle its business three games in a row, but I love it. It's a chance to get into a postseason mindset, work out any kinks that might hinder you in the NCAAs, and either validate your regular season title or atone for underachieving during the regular season. It's a celebration of Big 12 basketball. I love it, and I don't ever want to see it go away. A postseason conference title doesn't mean as much as a regular season title; but they are still a lot of fun.

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 6 months ago

The tournament is meaningless. Celebrating wins against 3 teams in a ten league team is a joke when stacked up against an 18 game regular season. To claim you are a league champion because you won those 3 games is at least inaccurate and at most completely wrong. It insults the regular season champs.

Here is an idea; before MLB League championships lets have divisional tournament games. The regular season champions would still go on to the League Championship Series but the winners of the divisional tournament games get a trophy. Hmm, sounds like a misguided attempt to boost self esteem.

I expect my comments will be met by claims of sour grapes. That's fine. In all honesty when KU has won the Big 12 tournament I felt no sense of pride. It was a nice reason to have a beer but the Big Dance starts immediately afterwards and puts the conference tournaments in perspective. When KU lost yesterday, I was disappointed for sure but not heartbroken. It did nothing to diminish the teams accomplishment of winning their 11th strait conference championship and I still had a beer.

The conference tournaments serve as a tool to make the jobs of the NCAA tournament committee a little easier when deciding the 64 team tournament brackets. Nothing more and nothing less. Oops I correct myself, it is now a 68 team tournament with the 'play in' games. Apparently, the committee's job was still too difficult.

Brad Farha 6 years, 6 months ago

And, conference tournaments = $$ for the conference.

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