There are thoughts of what the weather could do in Ames, Iowa, on Friday night and what shoes to wear for the thicker northern grass surface at Jack Trice Stadium. Now those are more critical question needing answers this week.
So, Coach Monken, could the weather impact the offense on Friday?
"I hope not. I hope it doesn't affect us," answered Monken. "They have to play in it too, so I don't think it will be a factor. We have to play well no matter what the weather conditions are. Hopefully they'll be nice."
How about the footing with that fescue grass they let grow a little higher there at Iowa State?
"Just make sure the players get out there early, especially on a grass field, and make sure the cleats that you're wearing for the game can adapt to the field conditions to be able to keep your footing."
How about working with a short week, what does that do this time of the season, is it critical?
"It's the way it is. I've been used to it," said Monken pointing to his days in the NFL. "With my four years with the Jaguars there were times when you play Monday night and play Sunday or Sunday night and play Thursday. "That's a part of it when people watch you on TV then you end up having different types of weeks. That won't be an excuse whether we play well or we don't.
"Our guys didn't have to play as many snaps as they would had it been closer," added Monken looking back at last Saturdays' 66-6 blowout of Texas Tech. "I think we played fewer snaps. It's like having a starting pitcher throw on just three days rest, but he only threw forty pitches – at least that's the mind trick we're playing."
When you play in northern conditions late in the season the offensive line becomes even more important and Monken was ready to brag on a few of those guys, starting with center Grant Garner.
"Grant, being a married guy; being a guy that's been here; being a guy that's come from the dead; got resurrected from a non-guy to being a guy that makes all the calls, to being a guy that gets everyone in the right spot," explained Monken. "It's a rarity in any game. You can't point out where there's been a bad snap. I can't think of one when he's been in the game. One game I thought there was a bad snap, but Brandon dropped it. That's unbelievable when you think about everything you have to do making points. I know we work on it, but every dang snap – 85 snaps a game. He's invaluable."
Garner was at the media gathering today making him a focal point of discussion, and so was Levy Adcock, so he drew mention too.
"Levy is a good player and he's kind of a goofball, so he keeps everybody loose," said Monken "I think his personality is good for the guys. I think he cares more than he leads on too: his personality is like, ‘I don't care;' goofy. I think he cares. It's important to him. It's one thing he enjoys doing and he's a really gifted guy. He has a lot of pure measurable skill and he's quick witted."
That really makes him a Monken kind of guy. Monken is sharp-witted and can strike hard with a quote or a comment. Come to think of it he strikes pretty hard with play calls as well.