|Posted by Steven Myers on March 1, 2014 at 12:15 AM|
Iowa State fans would tell you that luck hasn't always been on their side unless it was accompanied by "bad," and to be fair they may be on to something. Case in point:
So yeah, I guess Cyclone fans have a point, and I too have a point outside of complaining about bad luck and close losses I promise. To win the NCAA tournament a team has to be hot, get the right draw, and well, have some luck. I think the first one can and will happen as Hoiberg's teams have played very well in the tournament. Getting the right draw has not been so kind to the Cyclones. Since 2000 Iowa State has played in the tournament 5 times and 3 of those times they have lost to the eventual national champion in the state the schools call home. In 2000 the Elite 8 pitted a 3 vs 5, a 7 vs 8, a 6 vs 8, and finally a 1 vs 2. Bet you can't guess who had the privilage of playing in the 1 vs 2 game....yep your Cyclones, and they played against #1 Michigan St in Auburn Hills, MI. If you don't remember the outcome of that game then you probably weren't alive as the refs again played a pivotal role in determining the outcome.
This year feels like the year that could be different. The Clones haven't had gut wrenching last second shots hit against them that were so prevalent in previous years. They have overcome deficits that in other years they would have folded. This is a team that is very hard to prepare for in a day or two. They have so many weapons and they know how to use each weapon through creating mismatches all over the court. Sure they will run into a bigger more athletic team like a Kansas, but if they play the way they are capable of it won't matter. What will help their chances is if they are able to close out the season with at least another 4-5 victories. That should secure them a #3 seed if not a #2. The last three regular season games will not be easy as the teams they are playing against are fighting for either seeding or just to get into the big dance. Then you have the Big 12 Tournament, which is winnable by just about every team in the Big 12, outside of TCU. Iowa State is due for another one of those trophies, and I think they have a tremendous shot.
Ultimately the grand prize is a national championship. The Cyclones have a team that could make a push if they play their game, face the right teams at the right times, and of course if "lady" replaces "bad."