That Iowa State football game on Thursday night was perfect microcosm of where the football program has been at for the past five years. There was so much hype around that game heading into kickoff. This was their coming out party. A nationally televised game, coming in with a 2-1 non-conference record, against a Texas team who looked beatable. All the cards were lined up for the Cyclones to cash in on a big pot.
And then kickoff came and they laid an egg.
No two ways around it. Just like I've been saying for months now. Iowa State can #WinTheOffseason but there comes a point when you have to start winning games during the season and the Cyclones aren't at that point yet.
Maybe it was too optimistic to hope that the Cyclones could make a bowl game this year and get to at least 6-6 on the season. Maybe that step is still a year or two away. But the Human Hype Machine Matt Campbell has been pumping optimism into the program for so long now that it felt like now could be the time.
With the Major League Baseball regular season coming to an end yesterday, it's time to take a look at how my preseason predictions went.
AL East: Red Sox
AL Central: Indians
AL West: Rangers
AL Wildcards: Yankees, Astros
NL East: Mets
NL Central: Cubs
NL West: Dodgers
NL Wildcards: Nationals, Giants
ALCS: Rangers over Astros
NLCS: Mets over Cubs
World Series: New York Mets
So in the AL I hit 4 of the 5 teams and 2 of the 3 division winners.
And in the NL, I hit 3 of the 5 teams and 2 of the 3 division winners.
So on that front, not too bad. My playoff predictions were god awful though. A Mets/Rangers World Series? Yikes.
I'll post my playoff predictions once the Wild Card games are completed. But give me the Yankees and Rockies to advance. Hell, even make it a two-team parlay while you're at it.
The end of the regular season also meant the end of another broadcasting season for Hawk Harrelson, but this season comes with a little bit more finality for Hawk than others in the past have. Yesterday was Harrelson's last game on the road that he will call for the White Sox. After 33 seasons in the broadcasting booth calling calling for the White Sox, he will continue to transition out of the booth next season. He will only call 20 home games for the White Sox next year, meaning this was his last road trip in his career.
I always loved listening to Hawk call baseball games. Growing up in Iowa, the White Sox were on WGN quite a bit as I was growing up so I'd catch a lot of games that he'd call. Often times not full games but a couple innings here and there. He was such an unabashed homer when he call Sox games. Openly rooting for his guys and his teams while on air and often ranting when the White Sox were in a slump. I'm not going to link any of those tirades but just YouTube or Google "Hawk Harrelson rant" and I'm sure it will provide you with at least an hour's worth of entertainment from some of his rants of his career.
I know he's not "officially" retired yet with his 20 games he'll call next season but yesterday felt kind of like a sendoff for him. And I know he rubs some listeners the wrong way but I was surprised he didn't get more attention and publicity yesterday, especially here locally. When Vin Scully retired, you could turn on MLB Network or Twitter without running into a sendoff for him...even for the 2-3 weeks leading into his retirement. As great as Vin way, as an Iowa kid I rarely got to hear him call a game. You hear bits and snip-its, but rarely if ever an entire game of his. But that wasn't the case for me with Hawk. I heard him many times and he just became the face, or the voice I guess, of the White Sox and WGN for me. Congrats on the career and retirement Hawk.