The Times-Delphic

An open forum to discuss current news in Drake University's newspaper The Times-Delphic.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Big 4 football: bright purple

It looks like football fans of Iowa will put aside their differences — yellow and red or black and gold — and don Northern Iowa purple.

The Panthers were the only team to win this weekend, a 31-23 decision at No. 5 Youngstown State. Northern Iowa also jumped from No. 14 to No. 7 in the NCAA I-AA poll. The Panthers are 3-0 in the Gateway Conference and look to protect that mark when they host Western Illinois in the Dome on Saturday.

Another team that was in the NCAA I-AA standings was San Diego, which handed Drake a 37-0 loss at Drake Stadium. The Toreros are ranked No. 20 in the scholarship teams’ poll and No. 1 in the Sports Network Mid-Major poll.

Makes one think about how Northern Iowa and San Diego would match up … and it could happen. San Diego could earn one of the at-large bids to the NCAA tournament. It’s a long shot, though.

If San Diego were selected for the tournament it means the second-place Pioneer Football League team would play in the Gridiron Classic.

Drake travels to Dayton this Saturday. Normally this would be a big game, but the Flyers don’t seem to be the power they once were because they have yet to win a PFL game.

After Dayton, No. 4 Drake hosts No. 9 Davidson in its final home game and it closes out the regular season at No. 10 Jacksonville. So on paper, the Bulldogs could pull off second place in the conference.

So with a lot of good luck for San Diego and a little bad luck for Iowa State, Drake could go to a bowl game while the Cyclones stay home. Iowa State lost its homecoming game 42-26 to Texas Tech, and it needs to win three of its last four games to get six wins in order to make it to a bowl game. The Cyclones travel to Kansas State this Saturday and host Kansas the following week.

Coach Dan McCarney said he isn’t worried about his job even though athletic director Jamie Pollard has already shown he isn’t afraid to terminate jobs after missing post-season play. Remember what happened when the Iowa State men’s basketball team didn’t even make the National Invitation Tournament last season. Yup, bye bye Wayne Morgan. Hello, Greg McDermott.

Well, Jamie, if you’re in the market, I hear Jim Harbaugh can create a winning program. And he’s an ex-Bears hero in the state of Iowa. You’ve got to love that.

Anyway, McCarney can avoid this situation if he can get his offensive line to protect his quarterback, and if he can get his quarterback to throw the ball to Todd Blythe. Iowa State quarterbacks have already been sacked 23 times this season by opponents and Bret Meyer has taken most of those hits.

Iowa quarterback Drew Tate won’t be taking hits or snaps when Iowa faces Northern Illinois this Saturday at Kinnick. Tate injured his non-throwing hand at Michigan where the Hawkeyes lost 20-6. Tate will have surgery on his thumb and will be expected back in practice next Tuesday. Register reporter Andrew Logue said it isn’t clear whether Tate will be in the lineup for the Iowa-Northwestern game the following week.

Iowa is 2-3 in the Big Ten Conference, and it needs to win its last three league games to keep its hope alive for a “good” bowl game. Luckily for the Hawkeyes, their fans like to travel to warm destinations during the winter months, and bowl reps like that when selecting what teams they want.

How do you think the Big 4 teams will fare for the rest of their schedules?

And the winner is ... find out in two weeks

We’re hitting the home stretch of the races for U.S. representatives, state legislators and the next governor of Iowa.

The two candidates, Republican Jim Leach and Democrat Chet Culver, debated at Drake last week about heath care. You can read more about the debate at Drake and the Gubernatioal debate sponsored by The Des Moines Register and KCCI here.

Gubernatorial debates take place at Drake before election - News

Culver led in the last poll result taken, but Nussle suggested his opponent had a secret plan to bring back the controversial TouchPlay machines that were yanked from stores in May. The TouchPlay machines are controlled by the Iowa Lottery and look similar to slot machines, but a computer chip that pre-determines winners differentiate them from the machines you’ll find at Prairie Meadows. Casino slot machine winners are determined by random.

Nussle accused Culver of this because the Republican’s funding started going to Culver after he announced he was against the machines and would not bring them back.

Both men attended Drake for their graduate work. Culver earned a master’s degree and Nussle obtained his law degree.

Are you planning to vote? If so, for whom? Are you also following the Congressional races? What are some other issues you think are important to the election in these final weeks?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Big 4 football: two week update

I'm sorry about missing last week's football update ... midterms. I did, however, fulfill a request for a non-sports post.

But now it's back to sports. Drake faces its biggest challenge of the year on Saturday as it hosts San Diego. The Bulldogs are fresh off wins vs. NAIA Waldorf and a 29-0 decision at Butler. Saturday’s game at Drake Stadium pits No. 1 vs. No. 2. The Sports Network Poll released Monday kept San Diego as the top-ranked team, but moved the Bulldogs up to No. 2. Both teams are undefeated in the conference, and the winner will likely take the conference crown and advance to the Gridiron Classic, a “bowl game” with the PFL winner and the Northeastern Conference Champion.

For this level of football, this is as big as it gets … and you’re invited. Seriously, the Drake athletic administration wants to sellout Drake Stadium, so they’re selling tickets for $1. They figure 14,000 fans will help the Bulldogs beat Jim Harbaugh’s squad (yes, THAT Jim Harbaugh, the former NFL player). So if $1 tickets, $1 hot dogs and $1 popcorn aren’t enough for you, I guarantee an upset Jim Harbaugh is quite entertaining and will be well worth your dollar.

Are you going to the game? Why or why not? Do you think Drake will get its sellout Saturday? How do you think the Bulldogs will do against the Toredos?

Kickoff is at 6 p.m., and that gives you plenty of time to watch the other football games around the state. … Like Iowa at the Big House. It’s a shot at redemption … a long shot. After the Hawkeyes finally showed they were able to deliver a sound pounding — 47-17 over Purdue in Iowa City on Oct. 7 — Iowa drops a 31-28 decision at Indiana on Oct. 14

The simplest explanation is Indiana wanted more, and while the Hawkeyes were missing some key players, the Hoosiers were sporting mostly underclassmen. The quarterback is a freshman. And Indiana made Iowa pay for its mistakes — a fumble in the red zone and an interception in the 2-minute warning.

Hopefully the loss will inspire Iowa to win at Michigan this Saturday. The Hawkeyes will need the ‘W’ if they’re still looking to go to a January bowl.

Do you think Iowa can pull off the upset in the Big House? Do you think they need the win to go to a January bowl or is it still too early to tell.

However, Iowa State will need a win over Tech Tech this weekend at Jack Trice in order to go to any bowl. The Cyclones are 0-3 in the Big 12 and need to win three of their last five games the get the magic six wins to be bowl eligible.

Iowa State lost 28-14 vs. Nebraska at Ames and 34-9 at Norman, Okla. The Red Raiders are beatable, though. They just gave Colorado its first Big 12 win last week. After Texas Tech, Iowa State’s best chance at wins No. 4 and No. 5 are Kansas and Missouri at Ames. The Cyclones also have Colorado at Boulder and Kansas State at Manhattan.

Do you think Iowa State can win six games to get to a bowl? If not, do you think Jamie Pollard will fire coach Dan McCarney? McCarney got a raise last summer and is now a millionaire, but Pollard booted the men’s basketball coach shortly after Iowa State did not make post-season play (nope, not even the NIT). Yes, there was that issue with the D-I Scheduling, but McCarney’s past isn’t squeaky clean either.

Since nearly beating Iowa State, Northern Iowa has won its last two games vs. Missouri State on Oct. 7 and Indiana State on Oct. 14. The Panthers travel to Ohio this weekend to play Youngstown State.

How do you like Northern Iowa’s rebound since losing to Division II North Dakota State. Do you think the Panthers can keep it up and get back to the I-AA playoffs?

Finally, did you notice that basketball practice started. The season starts in two weeks.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Citizens for Tight Borders: Official Drake club

Citizens for Tight Borders offended a lot of people last year by posting fliers around campus that described negatively described immigrants who illegally enter the United States. Many thought the group was anti-immigrant.

Those feelings continued as Student Student agreed to grant the organization full club status with a 13-10 vote with two abstentions.

Members of La Fuerza Latina expressed concern that the group was anti-immigrants, but others interjected the group had the right to free speech regarding its political views.

Read the story Citizens for Tight Borders becomes official organization

What do you think about illegal immigration? CTB's views certainly aren't unique. The Des Moines Register published a feature story on western Iowa Rep. Steve King who suggested the United States build a wall across the Mexican boarder that would even keep the cockroaches out. He also wants to make English the official language of the United States. King has said that Joseph McCarthy was a great American hero, as well.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Shameless promotions!!!

I update it every Sunday and Wednesday night, so it's ready to go before you can get a print edition of the paper. How cool is that? And even cooler, you can have The Times-Delphic delivered to your inbox, so It'll be the when you wake up! Just register at — you guessed it —!

The Times-Delphic is quietly making its triuphant return to the Web, but we've still got a ways to go. About 40 people visit the site everyday and view about five pages while he or she is there. No one has commented on an article yet. You don't have to register to post your thoughts, although I encourage it so you can get that e-mail edition.

So, in the words of Elwood Blues, "Tell your friends" about!

My other promotion of the day is Local writer publishes teen novel This is a Quad-City Times article so local is Davenport, Iowa and writer is my grandpa, Jon Ripslinger.

I haven't read it yet (the Post Office has seemed to have misplaced my copy) but I've read his other two books — Triangle and How I Fell in Love and Learned to Shoot Free Throws — and they are both excellent.

And for more information, visit his Web site

Monday, October 02, 2006

The good, the bad and the ugly: Big 4 football

We'll start with the good. Drake beat Morehead State 33-7 in its homecoming game to improve to 2-0 in the conference. More good news for the Bulldogs. Dayton lost at Butler, although Drake travels to Ohio to face the ranked Flyers this season. But a blemish on Dayton's record will help Drake's chances of claiming the Pioneer Football League championship, which is awarded to the team with the best record in the conference. The league is now a round robin format, so there is no more PFL championship game. New this year though, the winner of the PFL will meet the Northeastern Conference champion in the Gridiron Classic. While not sponsored by the NCAA, it's the closest thing to a DI-AA nonscholarship championship game. The Bulldogs have a tough road ahead of them as it was just announced rookie quarterback Derek Retherford will be out for the rest of the season with an injury from the Morehead State game.

Maybe the Bulldogs will get the luck Iowa State had on Sept. 30 when it squeaked by I-AA Northern Iowa 28-27. The Panthers' kicked broke his streak of almost 20 made field goals by booting a 51-yarder wide right with 6 seconds remaining. The win would have been great for Northern Iowa but detremential for Iowa State and possibly could have cost Dan McCarney his job.

Do you think it was a good thing for Northern Iowa to make Iowa State squirm a little bit, especially after the Cyclones' AD Jamie Pollard made the Panthers and Bulldogs share the state stage earlier this season?

Iowa did not have any luck at all vs. top-ranked Ohio State, even with the College GameDay crew in town, the largest crowd at Kinnick Stadium and Lee Corso's nod donning the Herky head. Drew Tate threw three interceptions and Scott Chandler let one get away for a fumble.

Do you think Iowa learned any lessons? How do you think the Hawkeyes will fare against Purdue at home? Iowa State faces Nebraska. Lets hope the Cyclones were preparing for the Cornhuskers when they were supposed to be focusing on the Panthers. Drake host Waldorf — it's last nonconference game of the season. And Northern Iowa is back on its conference schedule vs. Gateway foe Missouri State.