It's Not Plagiarism If You Link To It is BHGP's regular news roundup. Send all tips to any of the email addresses at the bottom of the page. Rock the casbah.
Opportunity knocks. Mas Casa wonders what the future of the Big Ten holds with the standard-bearer over the last decade in tatters and since he's an Iowa writer (and this is an Iowa blog), the focus inevitably shifts to what impact the Fall of the House of Brutus might have on Iowa:
Let’s swing this to the Hawkeyes, that’s why I’m here. Because Iowa is in the Legends (hammer that into your brain, BTW) and doesn’t face Ohio State for the next two seasons, there is no immediate on-field bump. Key word here is "on-field."
In August, Iowa will have 10 Ohioans in camp, including six potential starters (corner B.J. Lowery, DT Steve Bigach, DE Lebron Daniel, free safety Micah Hyde, LB Anthony Hitchens and fullback Brad Rogers). OT Andrew Donnal and TE Ray Hamilton will likely get a shot at starting in their careers.
Secondary coach Phil Parker, an Ohio native, has set up shop. Offensive coordinator Ken O’Keefe also does business in the Cleveland area.
It's tough to dispute either point. On-field, the effect will be minimal -- Iowa wasn't going to play Ohio State until 2013 at the earliest (barring a match-up in the Big Ten Championship), by which point both teams will look fairly different than they do now. Iowa may see an on-field benefit then, of course, if the fallout from the sanctions involves as many scholarship losses and potential transfers as seem plausible. On the other hand, a weakened Ohio State will also have an indirect on-field effect on Iowa: Iowa may not play the Buckeyes over the next few years, but other Legends division teams will. If we were counting on Ohio State to rough up Nebraska, Michigan, and Michigan State and make it easier for Iowa to win the division, we may be forced to rethink that approach.
The off-field effect could be even stronger for Iowa, though. As Morehouse notes, Iowa made hay in Illinois in 2005 when Illinois and Notre Dame were in serious flux, and a down Ohio State (particularly one with limited scholarships to offer) could provide the same opportunities. It still might be difficult to snatch the elite recruits out of the state, but Iowa should have improved odds in snaring some of the second-tier talent in the state. (Of course, as Morehouse also notes, Iowa will be far from alone in trying to plunder Ohio: every other Big Ten team will be trying to do the exact same thing.)
Do the Metcalf. The World Team Trials this weekend are overloaded with former college wrestling stars and Iowa's well-represented. The top name there among former Hawkeyes? The beloved Brent Metcalf, of course, who won the event a year ago but was upset by eventual champion Teyon Ware in his last event (The U.S. Open in April). If he wants to get back on the winning track and defend his title, Metcalf will have to get through Ware -- by virtue of his April win, Ware gets an automatic bye into the best-of-three finals here. As Metcalf notes, there's a lot on the line here:
There’s more at stake this time around. The Olympic Trials are coming to Carver-Hawkeye Arena next April, and the World Championships are the first event in which a wrestler can earn an Olympic qualifying spot for his respective country. Metcalf would like to take care of those matters for himself.
"Even more than that, it’s an opportunity to go and win a World medal — a World gold medal," he said. "You’re only going to get so many of them. You give yourself 10 years, you’ve only got 10 shots. For me, I don’t even worry about the Olympic year right now. I’ve got a World Championships (ahead), this is an opportunity right now to go and compete at the World Championships and win a medal. I failed to do that last year, and I want to give myself that opportunity again."
The nice thing about the World Championships is that they come around every year (unlike the Olympics), but there's still a limited window in which competitors can realistically have a shot at winning medals. That window isn't anywhere near closing for Metcalf, but you also don't want to waste opportunities. Other Iowa faces in the mix include Mike Zadick, Dan Dennis, and Ryan Morningstar. Best of luck to all.
And in other World Team Trials news, guess who's back / back again. I have no affection for Sanderson, but I can't deny that it is a little exciting to see one of the sport's all-time greats suit up again. It's not the first time he's done so, of course -- as the article notes, he got back in the fray in April and torched the competition -- but the foes here should be a bit tougher and provide a better chance to see just how dominant he still is.
What's in a name? That school that the Big Ten continues to allege exists and that Jim Delany swears is Our Most Hated Rival was in the news this week. First, they announced a name for their student section: The Ross-Ade Brigade. Which seems like a thorough waste of time unless they're going to elevate Danny Hope to the rank of Brigadier General. I also can't figure out why they didn't go with the BHGP-approved suggestion of The Reamer Club. Take pride in your history, Boilermakers. Second, power forward Patrick Bade is ditching hoopyball and taking his talents to the football team. He hasn't played football since he was a junior in high school, but OMG IT WORKED FOR ANTONIO GATES.
Seeing red. In other rival-related news, Big Red fans (including ones in, um, Lincoln) may have trouble seeing Nebraska play this fall since there's a tiff between local cable providers and BTN about distribution and fees. Why, that doesn't sound familiar at all. Chin up, Husker fans: if you promise to behave, I'm sure you can go over to Counciltucky and watch your boys paste some non-conference patsy on TV there. And if Nebraska fans didn't have enough to worry about now, stud QB recruit Bubba Starling was drafted fifth overall by the hometown Kansas City Royals in this week's MLB draft. So: inking a multi-million dollar signing bonus and being a hometown hero for a club with one of the most promising (on paper, anyway) futures in baseball or heading off to Nebraska to get pulverized on a football field for 3-4 years. Tough call, that one. (And if Chris Weinke and Drew Henson taught us anything, it's that if you're good enough, you can always give football a try later if that baseball thing doesn't work out.)
Getting drafty. Speaking of the MLB draft, despite a disappointing year on the field, Iowa did manage to have a few players and incoming recruits plucked by the majors. Starting left-handed pitcher Matt Dermody went to Colorado in the 29th round (888th pick), incoming recruit Derrick Loveless went to Toronto in the 27th round (827th pick), incoming recruit Sasha Kuebel went to Oakland in the 31st round (946th pick), and incoming recruit Nick Hibbing went to Pittsburgh in the 42nd round (1262nd pick). It's unclear whether or not the incoming recruits will opt to go pro now and head to the minors or delay that move and stay at Iowa for the next three years. Loveless, Kuebel, and Hibbing were three of the top recruits in Iowa's class, although given where they were drafted and this tidbit --
Loveless, Hibbing and Kuebel were part of the 2011 Iowa recruiting class that ranked best in the Big Ten Conference by Perfect Game USA. In addition, Perfect Game USA ranked the class No. 48 nationally and fourth-best in the Midwest.
-- that really says a lot about the state of baseball at Iowa (and in the Big Ten, in general). When the best recruiting class in the conference barely cracks the top-50, nationally, you've got some issues.
* If you needed more information about the teams on Iowa basketball's non-conference schedule, never fear: Dochterman has you covered.
* Have we really reached the point of the offseason where we're talking about fishing? Yes. Yes, we have.
* Julian Vandervelde was one the male recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, one of five B1G footballers so recognized; track athlete Bethany Praska was the female recipient.
* Might Ryan Bowen be getting off the Frantastic Voyage after just one year? He might, and we could scarcely blame him for leaving a college video coordinator position for an NBA assistant coaching job.
* Finally, the team ratings for NCAA Football 2012 are out. Huzzah.