1997 was a year of mixed emotions. The Cyclones experienced the most severe of feelings within mere seconds of each other. It was the year some legends exited Campustown and others stepped foot for the first time. So feel free to rock out to some MMMBop, jump aboard the Titanic, and don't forget to bring along those septuplets. 1997 is off and sailing.
January 2- After losing to Florida State only a month earlier, Danny Wuerffel
and the Florida Gators defeat the #1 ranked Seminoles to win the National
Championship 52-20. The 32-point
margin of victory over FSU remains the largest versus a number one ranked team
in bowl history.
January 4- The #4 ranked Cyclone men travel
down to Missouri and send Norm Stewart home with a
scowl, winning 68-65 to move to 11-0. The #4 ranking is the highest for the
Cyclones since Jan. 22, 1957.
January 7- Iowa State is
shocked in Hilton by unranked Marquette 67-64.
January 18- The Cyclones are embarrassed at
70-45, their third loss in four games. Tim Floyd is so disgruntled that midway
through the second half he storms halfway onto the court, wrinkled program
encased in his right hand, to protest a call with some colorful language. He is
immediately ejected; meanwhile Brent Blum adds several new expletives to his
January 21- The Cyclone women fall 68-66 on a
buzzer-beater by Colorado in double OT. The loss moved the
rebuilding Cyclones under second year coach Bill Fennelly to 9-5. The announced
crowd of 2,700 is the ninth biggest crowd in ISU women's history up to that
point. In 2005-2006 the smallest crowd of the season would be 7,500.
January 26- The Green Bay Packers win Super
Bowl XXXI over the New England Patriots 35-21 in New Orleans. Desmond Howard is named the MVP
after a 99 yard kickoff return to seal it.
February 5- Iowa State handles Baylor 61-52 for their fifth
straight win. They improve to 16-3.
February 9- Dedric Willoughby scored 19
first-half points, hitting 5 3-point bombs and #6 ISU led #1 Kansas 32-28 at
half in an electric Hilton atmosphere. But the senior-laden Jayhawks couldn't be
stopped. They forced 23 Cyclone turnovers and walked out of Hilton with a 69-62
finished with 36 points and nine three point field goals. The nine 3's in one
game remain a Cyclone record.
February 11- "D'oh!" The Simpsons pass The
Flinstones as the longest-running animated series. Somewhere in Bedrock, Barney
and Fred claim Homer Simpson used performance-enhancing substances to break the
February 13- The Dow Jones closes above 7,000
for the first time.
February 16- Jeff Gordon is the youngest
driver to successfully complete four left turns 200 times before everybody else
to win the Daytona 500.
February 19- The Cyclone women stun #9
Hilton 74-56. It is their first win ever over a top 10 ranked team. They move to
February 23- The Spice Girls jump the big pond
and invade the U.S. with their deliriously awful
music. Their debut song "Wannabe" moves to #1 on the charts. And we thought the
"Macarena" was bad.
February 26- Kenny Pratt scores a game-high 16
points and #13 ISU suffocates Chanucey Billups winning 65-54 over the
19th ranked Buffs in Hilton. The win secures the four seed in the Big
12 tournament. But the Cyclones limp home losing 3 of 4 to end the conference
February 26- The wildly popular "Booty Call"
opens nation-wide. OK, "wildly popular" may be a bit much, but I enjoyed
March 7- ISU needs all of Dedric
Willoughby's 28 points to hold off Tony Battie and Texas Tech on the Friday of
the first Big 12 tournament. The Cyclones prevail 72-70.
March 8- The Cyclones earned a third shot
to defeat #1 Kansas in the semis. But once again Raef LaFrentz, Scott Pollard, and Paul Pierce proved too powerful, as Kansas dismantled Iowa State 72-48.
March 9- Rap superstar Notorious B.I.G. is
gun-down in Los
Angeles, only six months after Tupac was killed. The two
crimes have remained unsolved to this day.
March 9- The ISU women earn their first
ever bid to the NCAA tournament, receiving the 12 seed in the West Region.
March 9- The men are awarded the sixth
seed in the West Regional. The No.1 seeds: Kansas, Minnesota,
Kentucky, North Carolina.
March 12- Tim Duncan is named the NCAA
Player of the Year.
March 13- The ISU men travel to Auburn
Hills to face 11th seeded Illinois State. The Redbirds have no answer for
Kelvin Cato. Cato became a nationally known commodity after scoring 29 points,
grabbing 12 boards, and a Midwest Region record 8 blocks. The Cyclones cruise to
a 69-57 win.
March 14- The Cyclone women fall to
Utah 66-57 in
the first NCAA game. They wouldn't miss the NCAA tourney again until
March 15- The ‘Clones faced the difficult
task of playing 3rd seeded Cincinnati, who began the year as the #1
ranked team in the country. The Bearcats featured All-American bad-boy Danny Fortson. The game, as expected, turned into a defensive slugfest with both teams
exchanging the lead. With under three minutes to play, Kenny Pratt hit a
desperation 3 to give the Cyclones a 63-58 lead. The Bearcats stormed back and
took a 66-65 lead with 45 seconds remaining. After the ball was knocked
out-of-bounds and with Kelvin Cato fouled out, ISU turned to little-used Klay
Edwards, who connected on a hook shot off the out-of-bounds play to give ISU a
one point lead with 30 seconds. Fortson was denied the ball on the ensuing
possession and UC's Damon Flint missed a shot as time expired to give ISU the
upset. It was ISU's first birth in the Sweet 16 since 1986.
March 16- #8 seed Iowa is eliminated after losing to Kentucky in the second
round 75-69. Andre Woolridge had 29 points in the losing
March 21- Iowa State
moved on to face #2 seed UCLA in San
Antonio. The Cyclones got off to a roaring start and led
46-30 with 16 minutes to play thanks to Willoughby's hot shooting (He would finish with
34). The Bruins cut the lead to 1 with 8 minutes left after imploring a
full-court press. The lead was never more than two for either team until Cameron
Dollar hit a long jumper to push the lead to 64-61 Bruins with 50 seconds on the
clock. Willoughby countered with a fall-away three to
tie it up. Dollar was then whistled for an offensive foul to send the game into
OT. UCLA took a 72-68 lead in OT with 1:30. Edwards's lay-up cut the lead to 2
and a Charles O'Bannon foul sent Kenny Pratt to the line with a chance to tie
with 10 seconds left. He made the first. The second fell off the rim. UCLA's
Kris Johnson secured the rebound, but was called for traveling. Jacy Holloway
threw a lob for Shawn Bankhead who tomahawked the dunk on the in-bounds to give
ISU a 1 point lead. Dollar raced down the court, pushing off Holloway, he lofted
a high-arching shot over the extended arm of Kelvin Cato. Swish. Iowa State
was then called for a 5-second violation as Willoughby tried to draw a foul with 1.9
seconds on the clock. UCLA wins in a heart-breaker 74-73.
March 22- 4th seeded Arizona stuns #1 Kansas 85-82.
March 23- The ISU wrestlers finish fourth
at the NCAA's. Chris Bono finishes second at 150 pounds. Iowa wins the team
March 26- Thirty-nine bodies are found in
the Heaven's Gate Cult Suicide.
March 29- Marcus Fizer scores 11 points in
the McDonald's High School All-American game. Other members of the group: Ron Artest, Elton Brand, Shane Battier, Lamar Odom, Khalid El-Amin, Larry Hughes,
April 1- Arizona defeats defending champ Kentucky 84-79 in OT.
Miles Simon is named MOP after scoring a career high 30 points.
April 13- 21-year-old Tiger Woods wins his
first major by destroying the field at the Masters.
April 26- Troy Davis is selected by
New Orleans in
the 3rd round of the NFL Draft with the 63rd pick.
Coincidentally, Danny Wuerffel is picked by the Saints exactly a round later
with the 99th pick. Iowa State guard Tim Kohn is selected by the
Raiders with the 85th pick. The top 5 picks: Orlando Pace, Darrell Russell, Shawn
Springs, Peter Boulware,
Bryant Westbrook. Other players of note: Rae Carruth (27) Ross Verba (30) Byron
Hanspard (41) Sedrick Shaw (62) Calvin Branch (172).
May 2- Austin Powers shags into
theaters. Dr. Evil steals the show.
May 3- Tony Blair appointed as Prime
Minister of Great Britain.
May 11- With tremendous resiliency, the
"Deep Blue" Super Computer bounces back to defeat Kasparov in chess. Locally,
Brent Blum manages a legendary four game sweep of his brother in Connect
June 6- Brent Blum and Chris Williams
graduate the sixth grade after successfully showing knowledge of the Pythagorean
Theorem. Blum celebrates by watching the extremely underrated Con Air in
June 13- The Chicago Bulls top the Utah Jazz in six games to win their second straight NBA Finals. Jeff Hornacek has 18
points in the losing cause.
June 15- Hanson's MMMBop tops the music
charts. Civilization regresses several more decades. It was truly a rebuilding
year for the 1997 music charts.
June 25- Kelvin Cato is selected by the
Dallas Maverics with the 15th pick in the 1997 NBA Draft. He is later
traded to Portland for Chris Anstey and cash
considerations. (You know you've made it when you and the phrase "cash
considerations" are in the same sentence.)
June 28- Mike Tyson tries takes a bite out
of Evander Holyfield's ear. He would be disqualified by referee Mills Lane.
July 2- Men In Black opens and destroys
July 31- Mark McGwire is traded by the
Oakland A's to
the St. Louis Cardinals. The A's receive Eric Ludwick, T.J. Matthews, and Blake
Stein in return. Yea…that's not fair.
August 30- Iowa State dedicated its football stadium as
Jack Trice Stadium in a pre-game ceremony. It was previously known as Cyclone
Stadium-Jack Trice Field.
August 30- The Cyclones opened up the 1997
season at home against Oklahoma State. Todd Bandhauer connected with TD
passes to Ed Williams and Gerrick Bivins to give ISU the 14-7 halftime lead.
Bandhauer threw for 227 1st half yards, as ISU tailback Darren Davis
was injured. But the Cyclones gained only 51 more yards in the second half and
the Cowboys scored the go-ahead score with 9 minutes left to win 21-14.
August 31- Princess Diana is tragically
killed after a car crash in Paris. She was only 36.
September 6- ISU made the lengthy trip to the
unfriendly pastures of Laramie, Wyoming. The Cowboys were rude guests and led
by 25 points at half. They would win 56-10. Ouch.
September 13- The tough luck continued as the
Cyclones trekked to the Metrodome to play the Gophers. After an 81-yard
Bandhauer to Ty Watley bomb gave the Cyclones a 22-21 lead, Minnesota exploded.
Kick-returner Tutu Atwell took the ensuing kick-off 93 yards for a TD. It was
Atwell's second kick-off TD of the day. (Minnesota hadn't had a kick-off TD
since 1992) After ISU retook the lead with an Ed Williams 41 yard reception, the
Cyclones imploded, as they were outscored 25-0 in the final quarter, losing
September 20- The defense again couldn't stop a
soul as #13 Iowa rolled to a 63-20 win in Jack Trice.
State didn't get on the
board until the final seconds of the second quarter, but fittingly missed the
extra point and trailed 35-6 at half. Tim Dwight had 8 catches for 157 yards and
3 TDs. It would be Iowa's last win over the Cyclones for six
years, or 2187 days, or 52,488 hours, or 3,149,280 minutes. But who's counting?
October 4- The struggles continued for the
Cyclones as they limped to a 28-14 deficit at half, before falling 45-21 at
losing streak dating back to 1996 stood at 12.
October 11- Iowa State made the journey down
to #12 Texas A&M only to trail at the half 42-10, before eventually falling
56-17. Darren Davis had over 100 yards rushing for the second time in the
October 25- 13 was finally a lucky number for
ISU. After losing 13 straight the Cyclones came out on top by defeating Baylor
24-17. Davis had
a then career-high 247 yards in the win.
October 26- The Florida Marlins defeat the
Cleveland Indians in game 7 of the World Series. Livan Hernandez is named MVP.
He in turn ate several celebratory pieces of cake.
November 1- Despite out-gaining Kansas 490-355 the
Cyclones fell 34-24 to the Jayhawks. Davis continued his torrid pace, rushing for a
new career-high 261 yards in the losing effort. It was ISU's 7th straight loss
November 8- ISU led 14-0 after 1 and 35-17
after 3, but managed to squander the lead, losing to the Colorado Buffaloes
43-38. With ISU leading 38-37, Colorado converted a 4th and 10
with 1 minute remaining to keep the eventual game-winning drive alive before
scoring with 9 seconds left.
November 15- It was the most one-sided half in
college football in a long time. Ahman Green scored 3 times in the first seven
minutes and #3 Nebraska put up 63 first half points, leading
by 56 points by halftime. The ISU defense held firm (tongue firmly implanted in
cheek) giving up only 14 second half points as the ‘Clones eventually succumbed
in a nail-biter 77-14.
November 19- The state of Iowa makes national news thanks to a Carlisle woman who gave birth to septuplets. Bobby and
Kent McCaughey were the new parents of seven kids. Roy Williams immediate places
a call in effort to get the kids to move to Kansas.
November 22- ISU ended the rough year, losing
28-3 to #7 K-State. Wildcat QB Michael Bishop accounted for 3 scores as K-State
had no trouble with the dejected Cyclones in Ames.
November 23- The revamped ISU men's team drops
its first regular season game to UNI 54-48. Marcus Fizer has 6 points and 4
fouls in his debut. Hawkeye fans claim Fizer is overrated.
November 29- In his second game, Fizer records
his first double-double going for 20 and 10 against Texas-Arlington. Hawkeye
fans quickly want Fizer on their team and deny anything otherwise.
December 6- Nebraska destroys A&M to win the Big 12 Football
Championship in San
December 13- #10 Iowa escapes Hilton with
a 60-59 win, a Ryan Bowen lay-up with a minute remaining the difference. ISU
falls to 4-3.
December 13- Charles Woodson wins the Heisman
trophy in a mild upset over Peyton Manning. People around the nation question
what a "mild upset" is.
December 19- "Titanic" opens and takes any
existing box office record and shatters it like a dropped iceberg. Previous
records sink faster than the Titanic. The other films that open have as good of
chance of succeeding as the people on the Titanic. OK, I'm
December 29- Tim Floyd visited his former
Orleans in the final Cyclone game before the New Year.
Thanks to Fizer's 21 and 10, the Cyclones snapped New Orleans' 28 game home-winning streak,
defeating the Privateers 70-68. The ‘Clones improved to 7-6 on the season.