APRIL 24 OFF THE MARK COLUMN — MARK SPENSLEY, CO-PUBLISHER
The game within the game: Is Iowa a Hawkeye state or a Cyclone state? This subject will be and has been debated for years and probably will never be answered.
But a new twist took place a couple of weekends ago when the Hawkeyes picked up camp and moved to Ankeny to give their Western and Central Iowa fans a chance to see them in person.
Of course, it was only a Hawkeye practice, but it did stir up some debate as to why and should the Hawks have made what some considered a bold and infringing move.
Tickets to the event were given away for free in Hy-Vee grocery stores and reports were that Cyclone fans were gobbling up the free tickets and filing them in their favorite waste can. Can you blame them?
I find this humorous but I did see some fellow Hawkeye fans respond as expected on Internet forums, most complaining about this deceitful tactic.
One character went as far as to notion that Iowa fans wouldn’t pull something like this if the Cyclones came to Cedar Rapids to conduct a practice. Come on now. I’m sure a few Hawkeye fans would respond the same way.
Another guy followed up this comment with his own stating that if in deed Iowa State staged a practice in Eastern Iowa, hardly any Cyclone fans would show up.
That stirred me up a bit and I followed his comment with one of my own, “There are quite a few Cyclone fans and graduates living in Eastern Iowa. I don’t believe for a second that a Cyclone practice wouldn’t sell out if it landed in Cedar Rapids.”
A few others answered similarly and that ended that debate. I think the Hawks made a great decision to change things up by taking their show on the road. Likewise, I think the Cyclones should follow suit and showcase their team in our neck of the woods. (Did I just hear Nick H. fall off his chair?)