The 2005-06 Cyclones, Part I

Excitement is already building for next basketball season after ISU finalized a 7-man recruiting class that ranks among the 25-best in the country. If you can't wait for next winter, take a look at our sneak peek of what the backcourt rotation could look like when the 2005-06 season begins.

Point Guard

Starter: Will Blalock, Jr.

Has added almost 30 pounds to his frame since he first arrived on campus…was the Big 12 Player of the Week the final week of the regular season…scored in double-figures in 20 of ISU's 30 games last season…tied for first in the Big 12 in steals per game in conference play…was fourth in the Big 12 in assists…had the fifth best assist-to-turnover ratio in the Big 12…already has third-best ISU assist-to-turnover ratio in ISU history…ISU's best free throw shooter at 78%…still struggles at times on when to assert himself offensively…added an effective pull-up jumper to his offensive repertoire last season…must dramatically improve his three-point shooting accuracy (went from 43% as a freshman to 26% as a sophomore) next season.

Reserve: Tasheed Carr, So.

It's no coincidence that ISU's turnaround coincided with his emergence, providing valuable depth in the backcourt and ISU's only legitimate three-point shooting threat…a member of the Big 12 All-Reserve Team…scored 41 points in his first 16 games, but scored 140 points in his last 15 games…his career-high 22 points, including 13 in overtime, lifted ISU to its dramatic, streak-busting win at 22nd-ranked Texas…his 28 three-pointers was the fourth-best total for a freshman in school history…displayed surprisingly good court vision and athleticism in the open floor…needs to become more confident handling the point…solid defensive player, although there were several times as a freshman he struggled to understand his place in ISU's various defensive schemes.

Shooting Guard

Starter: Curtis Stinson, Jr.

Tough and physical, he bench presses well over 300 pounds…second team All-Big 12…named to the All-Big Defense Team…first team All-District 12 according to the National Association of Basketball Coaches…ISU's leading scorer (17.2 points per game)…finished second to Blalock in assists…had a 34-to-16 assist-to-turnover ratio in the last 16 games of the season…finished in the top 10 in the Big 12 in scoring, assists, and steals…the third fastest player to ever reach the 1,000-point plateau in ISU history…had 10 games of 20 points or more…has two 30+point games, both on ESPN2…twice named Big 12 Player of the Week…his 72 steals last season were the third highest total in school history…is 11th in school history in steals and assists…recovering from surgery to repair a torn ligament in a finger on his shooting hand…displayed grit last season while playing with an assortment of injuries…needs to improve his three-point shooting percentage (26%), which should be aided after he fully recovers from aforementioned surgery…still struggles with his on-court maturity at times, but there's no questioning his wanting to win.

Reserve: John Neal, Sr.

Came into the season with tremendous expectations after going from walk-on to scholarship player, and struggled to meet those expectations throughout his junior year…for whatever reason, never was able to display the shooting touch he demonstrated in summer workouts once the season began…still best known for his off-the-bench performance against Iowa two season ago…still played good defense when he did play, however, his minutes greatly declined as the season wore on…averaged 1.8 points and 1.1 rebounds per game…started four games…best defensive performance came against Virginia, when he held Devin Smith scoreless the final six minutes…best all-around game of the season was in the opener against Drake, when he finished with five points, six rebounds, and six assists…scored a career-high 16 points against Wagner…shot just 25% from three-point range…look for him to change his uniform to No. 40 in honor of the late Chris Street.

Reserve: Farnold Degand, Fr.

A rising point guard who is just 17 years excellent shooter and ballhandler who can play either guard position...averaged 17.3 points, 8.0 rebounds and 5.1 assists...was a Boston City All-Star and a Boston Globe and Boston Herald All-Scholastic team member, which rates the best 12 players in won the Boston City League South Championship all four a four-year starter, team was one of three in the state to make the Elite Eight in three of four years...was a 1,000-point scorer in his career...was a U.S. Marine leadership recipient winner...averaged 18.1 points and 6.2 rebounds as a junior...played AAU basketball for Leo Papile's BABC squad, the same team that produced current Cyclone Will Blalock…chose Iowa State over Northeastern, Boston University, Ohio State and Nebraska…a likely candidate to redshirt this season.

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