5 Questions with Jack Whitver

Want to know what the actual athletes think about everything that Jamie Pollard is doing at Iowa State? If so then this is the feature for you. CN's Jack Whitver answers questions about Jamie Pollard and all of the big news coming out of Iowa State. Check it out here at CN.

CN: How would you grade Jamie Pollard so far as the athletic director?

 

Whitver: I think that he has to get an A so far. From the beginning, the thing that I was impressed with was that he was set on turning the entire phase of Cyclone athletics into a program that can compete with anybody on a national level. He's done little things throughout the time to get the ball rolling and get people excited. I think that the overwhelmingly majority of people think he's a great AD.

 

CN: What did you think of selling football tickets for $10 last year?

 

Whitver: I think that was one of the best ideas that he's had since he got here. The fact that he was able to fill up the stadium during a game that normally wouldn't have been filled up, in the middle of a tornado, which did a lot for the program. That brought a lot of people in who don't normally go to games or don't normally don't want to go to games. On top of that, they saw one of the best Cyclone wins in the past few years. Those people who normally wouldn't be there, well they were there and they saw a great game with a great atmosphere. That gets the players excited. The players want to get off the bus and see a packed parking lot and a packed stadium. That gets them ready to play so little things like that he's done go a long ways in building the program.

 

CN: What are your thoughts on this $135 million expansion?

 

Whitver: I think that is an extremely ambitious goal but the thing is, Jamie Pollard has been at two places that have previously totally turned their programs around. He was at Wisconsin which had one of the lowest budgets in the Big Ten and now it's one of the top athletic programs in the country. He did the same thing in his time at Maryland. They went from being average, to being in a BCS bowl and a national title in basketball. Now their women's basketball team on a national title. He has shown that he can put a financial plan together that can get it done. It might be ambitious, but I think he's right when he says you have to spend money to make money.

 

CN: Do you think he can produce the same kind of turnaround at Iowa State that he did at Wisconsin and Maryland?

 

Whitver: I think that he is setting the program up to do that. Now there are a lot of other people who factor into this. Jamie Pollard can't do it all by himself. He needs alumni; he needs the teams to perform on the field. It's not an easy thing to do. We have a guy at the top of the ladder right now, in Jamie Pollard who can be a catalyst to turn this program around. As a Cyclone fan, and a former player I can only hope that he can do the same thing that he did at Maryland and Wisconsin.

 

CN: What has made Pollard such a good AD in this short period that he's been here?

 

Whitver: I think the biggest thing that he's done is the fact that he's seen top notch athletic programs and he's not afraid to come in and tell fans, players and coaches what it takes. He basically said that the stadium looks like garbage not being bowled in. That's something in the past that people thought, but they didn't say it out loud. He's not afraid to stand up, put his foot down and say this is how it's got to be. If we want to be big time, we've got to do it this way. He's not being political; he's just telling it how it is. Iowa State fans are hungry for somebody like that who will take the big steps and just try to get by and try to win on a small budget.


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