September 3, 2015

Cyclones view opener as ‘tone setter’

Sam Richardson

Sam Richardson

The first game can set a tone for the season and the Iowa State Cyclones hope the correct tone is set on Saturday night when they host Northern Iowa. Iowa State has dropped season openers to FCS foes the past two years and it was a sign of things to come as the Cyclones won only five of 19 games during that span.

Iowa State quarterback Sam Richardson says it is important to perform well in an opener and build confidence.

“It’s the start of everything”, says Richardson. It definitely builds confidence and sets the tone for the rest of the season.”

Sophomore receiver Allen Lazard says the Cyclones are motivated for a quick start after losing 34-14 to North Dakota State in last year’s opener.

“Losing that first game is a downer”, said Lazard. “It starts up some negativity you don’t need.”

Lazard says FCS teams always come into games with “a chip on their shoulder” and UNI will be no different. The Panthers beat the Cyclones 28-20 to open the 2013 season.

Beathard ready for opening test

C.J. Beathard

C.J. Beathard

The Iowa Hawkeyes open the new season with a new quarterback when they host Illinois State on Saturday in Kinnick Stadium. It will be their first game since junior C.J. Beathard was given the keys to the offense just days after a Taxslayer Bowl loss to Tennessee.

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz says the move has allowed Beathard to assume a leadership role on the team.

“The whole idea is for him to go out and play his best football and it’s not to follow up in anybody’s footsteps”, said Ferentz. “The bottom line is he’s his own guy and his own player and that’s what I have encouraged him to do is to go out and just do your best.”

Beathard says the Hawkeyes are anxious to erase the memories of last year’s three game skid to end the season.

“It’s been a long process but a process we needed to get better as a team”, said Beathard. “Come Saturday we’ll get to show what we have been working on and working towards this whole off season.”

Not only will Beathard’s family be at the game but his uncle, Kurt Beathard, is the offensive coordinator for Illinois State.

Photo by Joe Danielson.

Farley not ready to name starting quarterback at UNI

Mark Farley (file photo)

Mark Farley (file photo)

UNI coach Mark Farley may wait until right before Saturday’s kickoff at Iowa State to name a starting quarterback. Sawyer Kollmorgan, Aaron Bailey, Dalton Demos and Eli Dunne are all vying for the job.


Dunne is a redshirt freshman from Grinnell who Farley says has stepped up his game while Kollmorgan has started 27 games over the past three seasons.

“I don’t know if I can weed out a guy which means that nobody has stood out enough to say that’s the guy”, said Farley. The other side of that is they have all competed very well.”


Farley had said he wanted to trim the competition down to two quarterbacks by game week. If he has done that he’s not letting on.





Cyclones hope to make it happen

ISU signThe doors in the Iowa State football complex all have signs hanging on them that read “1-0, make it happen!!!”. After opening the past two seasons with losses to FCS foes the Cyclones look to turn things around on Saturday night when they host the Northern Iowa Panthers in Jack Trice Stadium.

Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads says every team wants to get off to a fast start.

“It’s needed for confidence and it’s needed for all the hard work you put in from the end of last season to right now”, said Rhoads. We’re anxious to continue the preparation to get to that point Saturday night and go play.”

The Cyclones host a Panther squad that beat them 28-20 in the 2013 season opener.

Saturday’s game will be the first for new-look Jack Trice Stadium with the enclosed north end zone. Despite five straight losing seasons Rhoads says the Cyclones fans have shown their loyalty as the game is nearly sold out.

Radio Iowa High School Football Poll 8/31/15

Class 4A
1. WDM Valley (1-0), LW #1 @ Iowa City West
2. Cedar Falls (1-0), LW #2 @ Ames
3. Bettendorf (1-0), LW #3 @ Iowa City High
4. Dowling Catholic (0-0), LW #4 vs #8 Urbandale
5. Cedar Rapds Washington (1-0), LW #5 vs #7 CR Kennedy
6. Ankeny Centennial (1-0), LW (X) @ DSM Roosevelt
7. Cedar Rapids Kennedy (1-0), LW (X) @ #5 CR Washington
8. Urbandale (1-0), LW #9 @ #4 Dowling Catholic
9. Lewis Central (1-0), LW #10 @ CB Abe Lincoln
10.Fort Dodge (1-0), LW (X) vs Sioux City North

Class 3A
1. Pella (1-0), LW #1 @ #2 Dallas Center-Grimes
2. Dallas Center-Grimes (1-0), LW #2 vs #1 Pella
3. Cedar Rapids Xavier (0-0), LW #3 vs #4 Assumption
4. West Delaware (1-0), LW #6 vs Maquoketa
5. Davenport Assumption (0-1), LW #4 @ #2 CR Xavier
6. Carroll (1-0), LW #8 vs #7 Harlan
7. Harlan (1-0), LW #10 @ #6 Carroll
8. Waverly-Shell Rock (1-0), LW #9 @ Mason City
9. Sioux City Heelan (1-0), LW (X) @ 2A-#2 Central Lyon/GLR
10.Webster City (1-0), LW (X) vs Clear Lake

Class 2A
1. North Fayette Valley (1-0), LW #1 vs Independence
2. Central Lyon/GLR (1-0), LW #3 vs 3A-#9 SC Heelan
3. Albia (1-0), LW #4 vs Fairfield
4. Dyersville Beckman (1-0), LW #6 vs Western Dubuque
5. CMB (Maxwell) (1-0), LW #7 vs Roland-Story
6. South Tama (1-0), LW #9 @ Vinton-Shellsburg
7. Mediapolis (1-0), LW #5 vs Mount Pleasant
8. Spirit Lake (1-0), LW #10 vs Forest City
9. Hampton-Dumont (1-0), LW (X) vs Crestwood
10.Sioux Center (1-0), LW (X) @ Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley

Class 1A
1. Iowa City Regina (1-0), LW #1 @ Cascade
2. Hinton (1-0), LW #3 vs LeMars Gehlen
3. Pella Christian (1-0), LW #4 @ Lynnville-Sully
4. Dike-New Hartford (1-0), LW #5 @ A-#1 Gladbrook-Reinbeck
5. Madrid (1-0), LW #6 vs Woodward-Granger
6. West Branch (1-0), LW #8 vs West Liberty
7. Panorama (1-0), LW (X) @ Manson NW Webster
8. Pocahontas Area (1-0), LW (X) vs A-#9 Algona Garrigan
9. IKM-Manning (1-0), LW (X) vs A-#4 Audubon
10.West Lyon (0-1), LW #9 vs Sheldon

Class A
1. Gladbrook-Reinbeck (1-0), LW #1 vs 1A-#4 Dike-New Hartford
2. BGM (Brooklyn) (1-0), LW #2 vs WACO
3. Logan-Magnolia (1-0), LW #3 vs Underwood
4. Audubon (1-0), LW #4 @ 1A-#9 IKM-Manning
5. South O’Brien (1-0), LW #5 vs HMS (Hartley)
6. Pekin (1-0), LW #6 vs Sigourney-Keota
7. Belmond-Klemme (1-0), LW #9 vs West Fork
8. West Sioux (1-0), LW #10 vs Okoboji
9. Algona Garrigan (1-0), LW (X) @ 1A-#8 Pocahontas Area
10.Montezuma (1-0), LW (X) vs Van Buren

1. Newell-Fonda (1-0), LW #7 vs Harris-Lake Park
2. HLV (Victor) (2-0), LW #2 vs Midland (Wyoming)
3. Coon Rapids-Bayard (1-0), LW #3 vs Marcus MMC
4. Graettinger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayshire (1-0), LW #4 @ North Iowa
5. Don Bosco (0-0), LW #5 vs Springville
6. Glidden-Ralston (1-0), LW #6 Idle
7. Janesville (1-0), LW #8 @ Central City
8. West Bend-Mallard (0-1), LW #1 @ Northwood-Kensett
9. Colo-Nesco (1-0), LW #9 vs Charter Oak-Ute
10.Fremont-Mills (1-0), LW #10 @ Boyer Valley

Newell-Fonda streaks into clash with #1 West Bend-Mallard

Brian Wilken (Photo courtesy of Scott Kilbride)

Brian Wilken (Photo courtesy of Scott Kilbride)

A loss in week three of the 2014 season dropped Newell-Fonda’s record to 0-3. It would be their final setback of the season. Coach Brian Wilken’s team ripped off 11 straight wins en route to the 8-man state championship and head into Friday’s season opener ranked seventh in the Radio Iowa Poll.

In an 8-man game dominated by offense the Mustangs can get downright defensive. They held three of their playoff opponents to less than 20 points.

“We want to be a great defensive football team and on our priority list that is first and foremost”, said Wilken. I know that’s a different belief than some programs but that’s are belief that you can play great defense in the eight man game.”

One of the new starters this year is at quarterback where Jason Hess takes over for Brady Dicks, who accounted for 43 touchdowns last year. Hess stepped when Dicks was injured in the championship game.

Newell-Fonda opens with a visit to a top ranked West Bend-Mallard team that blanked them 18-0 in last year’s season opener.


Ryan Thompson from KAYL in Storm Lake contributed to this story

Difficult slate awaits #1 Gladbrook-Reinbeck

gladbrook-reinbeckGladbrook-Reinbeck takes the state’s top ranking in class A into Friday night’s season opener at class 2A second rated Union of LaPorte City. Coach John Olson’s team has an experienced nucleus returning from last year’s team that made it all the way to the class A championship before falling to Logan-Magnolia.

The Rebels have eight starters returning on both sides of the ball but Olson feels the key to their season will be the new players in the lineup.

“We’re very respectful and very proud to be ranked based on what we have done in the past because we are happy about what we have done”, said Olson. “At the same time it does not make that much difference for this year. We’ve got a new team and a new group of people and we’ve got to make sure we’re working toward what we need to do this year.”

Olson’s squad will be tested out of the gate with a visit to a Union team that beat them 25-7 in last year’s season opener. It will be the first of two difficult non-district tests for the Rebels who will host 1A fifth ranked Dike-New Hartford next week.



Elwin Huffman from KOEL contributed to this story