While every opponent that plays the Hogs is certainly deserving of hate, The Iowa State Cylcones are the first team to land in the Hate Crosshairs this season. With all the love the Hogs have been getting lately, it's hard to get that angry, but that's never stopped us before. It's Reasons to Hate!
1) NCAA Tournament. Fred Hoiberg actually started coaching at Iowa State while Mike Anderson was still coaching at Missouri. His first season in Ames, the 'Clones went 16-16, which was technically an improvement after the previous 4 losing seasons. Since Mike Anderson came to Arkansas, Iowa State has yet to miss the NCAA tournament. While Arkansas hasn't posted a losing season since 2009-10, they've been unable to find themselves dancing in March. How can a University like Iowa State bounce back so quickly from mediocrity when they don't have the rich basketball history a school like Arkansas has?
2) Hilton Magic. While Arkansas enjoyed Paris Hilton's magic in Altus, Arkansas in 2003, Clones fans have enjoyed Hilton Magic since 1989 as they have posted long standing home winning streaks in both men's and women's basketball and surprised teams that were favored to beat them even in Ames. While Mike Anderson won there in each of his last three seasons, Iowa State fans are fond to point out that Hilton Magic has returned under Coach Hoiberg who has only lost one game by double digits in Hilton. Arkansas knows what an advantage home court can be with Bud Walton Arena. It will be strange to see it work the other way.
3) Lamar. Tuesday night, Iowa State defeated Lamar 96-59. One of the perceived advantages the Hogs had in Thursday's game was depth and pace. Arkansas has 10 players averaging 10+ minutes per game, but only 4 averaging 20+, and only Michael Qualls playing anywhere close to 30 minutes per game. Meanwhile Hoiberg has been very Billy Donovan like with only 6 Cyclones playing in all of the first 4 games, and all of his starters averaging at least 29 minutes per game. In the 5th game of the season, 13 Cyclones saw the floor and Bryce Dejean-Jones led in minutes with 27 minutes because he was having the game of his life. What gives? Come on, you can't prepare for the Hogs, Hoiberg. You gotta play those starters deep into the game against the Lamar... Cardinals? Oh. Like Cy, the Cardinal.
4) Cy the Cardinal. Arkansas fans will know that our colors are actually Cardinal and White, the same that Iowa State is Cardinal and Gold. While a mascot as a Cyclone is hard to depict, the Cardinal Color for the school was used to select Cy the Cardinal as their mascot in 1954. The Cyclone as a mascot is actually very similar to the way Arkansas was named the Razorbacks. After a 36-0 win over Northwestern, The Chicago Tribune declared that Northwestern had been struck by a cyclone, and so Iowa State became the Cyclones in 1895. Though Iowa State used an actual Tornado to help them win a football game against Colorado in 2005. An actual tornado, with sirens and everything. This would be like LSU releasing a tiger. Arkansas letting Tusk out onto the field. Alabama.... well let's not go there.
5) The Mayor. Some outlets this year have mistakenly assumed Mike Anderson played for Arkansas, due to the long history he had coaching in Fayetteville, but Fred "The Mayor" Hoiberg actually played in Ames. Hoiberg grew up in Ames, played college in Ames, left for a long middling professional career, spent some time in an NBA front office, and landed back in Ames in 2010. Hoiberg actually received votes in the 1993 Ames mayoral race which earned him the nickname the Mayor. It's basically like if we had Corliss coaching our basketball team right now, if Big Nasty had been more of a Big Nicey.
6) Monte Morris. Monte Morris achieved an assist to turnover ratio in 2013-2014 that has never been seen before in college basketball, and he's on pace to shatter that number this season. In 41 games played, he only has 31 turnovers... Remember all of those seasons when we watched Arkansas struggle in the half court and wished we'd had a good point guard? We might see one on Thursday Night.
7) Nattie Light. I know I keep comparing them to us, but this Larry Eustachy story is pretty similar to CBP's legendary motorcycle ride. Take a 32 win basketball coach, remove him from that by two seasons, add in a road loss to Mizzou, and then you get Larry Eustachy drinking Natural Light Ice and kissing Mizzou girls at a fraternity party at 2:00 AM. In Columbia... not in Ames. Seriously? I thought the Bobby Petrino story was crazy.