The Shadow Knows 2001 Pre-Season Magazines

An annual tradition of The Shadow on July 4th is to buy and read all the preseason football magazines. However, in recent years most of the magazines are better suited for the trash. Even venerable old favorites, like Street & Smith now come with more advertising than football facts. Hewever, there is ONE magazine that features two full pages on every division 1 college team, and that is Phil Steele's.

Any reader of the internet knows far more about the Iowa starters and other personnel than some wimp in New York writing a couple of paragraphs on the Hawks. However, a ray of light comes from Cleveland in the form of Phil Steele's College Football Preview 2001. I have purchased his magazines for about the last five years and now don't even waste my time with the others. What does the messiah from Cleveland have to say about the Hawks?

Phil Steele's surprise team in the Big Ten this year is.......drum roll please, the Iowa Hawkeyes. Note that his surprise team last year was co-champion Northwestern. He picks the Hawks to be # 38 saying "Here is a big surprise team for the Top 40!" Although Phil picks the Hawks 7th in the Big Ten, he adds that parity in the league this year could produce a 5 team tie at the top. Last year he predicted there could be a three- team tie and that happened. That means the Hawks could be just a victory or two behind the leaders!

Steele has the Hawkeye recruiting class this year as # 24 in the nation. He predicts starting roles for C.J. Jones at WR, Matt Roth at LB and Jeremire Roberts at DB. He has Kahlil Hill as his first team AA KR. His All Big Ten team selections include Hill at KR and Aaron Kampman at DE on the first team. The Big Casino, Jerry Montgomery, is a 2nd team selection at DT as is Ladell Betts at RB.

The Shadow says go to Barnes & Noble or Borders and plunk down the $7.95 for an almost 300 page college football bible. There are TWO full pages on every division 1 team. In addition, there is a coupon on page 285 entitling you to his 2001 NFL Preview magazine for FREE. So, before you pig out on BBQ, coleslaw and beans, get some reading material that will add a little spice to your long hot summer.

Remember, on Independence Day, that the freedoms we enjoy today have been paved by the lives of many American servicemen. I wouldn't be writing about football without the aid of these brave men and women. Aren't we fortunate that I'm not closing this piece with "Are you ready for some soccer?"

That's my take, but what do I know?

The Shadow

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