The Wiz begins his fourth consecutive year of displaying team poster schedules with the 2009 effort from Iowa State. Paul Rhoads is the new Cyclone coach, taking over for Gene Chizik, who was 5-19 in two seasons at Ames. As always, you can click the image for a detailed look.
This year we are going to introduce a series of online polls to this feature so readers can choose their favorite poster. This is how the Wiz Readers' Choice Award will work: One poster will be published each day. Every Sunday, after a set of seven posters have been displayed, a poll will allow readers to vote for their favorite from the past week.
Last year, 54 teams had their posters displayed, and we anticipate roughly the same number this year. That breaks down to eight primaries. The primary winners will then square off in a final poll for the poster title. Voting on each of the primaries will remain open until two days (48 hours) after the final poster has been published. The poll for the final vote will remain open for one week.
Despite our best efforts, we always miss a cheapie or two. Here is one that certainly deserved to be included on our list. Iowa State's Leonard Johnson flattens Omar Clayton after the Nevada Las Vegas quarterback scored a touchdown. Johnson was ejected and later issued an apology.
Gene Chizik left Iowa State three weeks ago for Auburn, but Cyclone fans — one in particular — remain furious.
Ben Bruns, who holds a degree in construction engineering from Iowa State, was a starter on the Cyclone offensive line in 2000 and a third-team All-American. He remains close to the program as president of the Iowa State Letterwinners Club board of directors. He has also been a sideline reporter for Cyclone radio broadcasts the last few years and is a project manager with Weitz, a construction company overseeing the renovation of Jack Trice Stadium in Ames.
On Chizik telling Cyclone players he was leaving, Bruns writes: "Accounts say it was a 90 second to 3 minute session where the 'CEO' coach told his guys it was something he had to do for his family and that it was his dream job. By all accounts, he didn't look one person in the eye. By a number of other accounts, he didn't talk to his old staff in the time leading up to the meeting and in the time immediately after."
Although we may never know the real story behind Tommy Tuberville's resignation and the curious hiring of Gene Chizik at Auburn, there are several theories making their way around cyberspace. Larry Burton of Bleacher Report has a grasp of the issue and it centers around — you guessed it — agent Jimmy Sexton, who happens to represent Tuberville, Chizik and Mississippi's Houston Nutt.
All four cashed in on the deal, with Auburn taking the biggest hit. Not only did it have to pay Tuberville $5.1 million, it had to hire Chizik at a reported $2 million a year. Nutt got a hefty raise at Ole Miss and Sexton walks away with $1 million in commissions. Not bad for 10 days work.
Turner Gill, thought to be Iowa State's No. 1 candidate for its coaching opening, has told the Cyclones he's not interested in the position.
Steve Mooney, Gill's agent, was interviewed Tuesday on the Marty and Miller Show on Des Moines station KXNO. Mooney said his client was not going to be Iowa State's coach and would remain at Buffalo. You can listen to the interview by clicking here.
Gill was a finalist at Auburn but the Tigers decided to hire Gene Chizik, which created the opening at Iowa State. The hiring of Chizik, who left Iowa State with a 10-game losing streak, has been universally criticized by Auburn fans.
ESPN's Mark Schlabach said two other Southeastern Conference coaches told him that Gill would never get the Auburn job because he's married to a white woman. Charles Barkley eariler ripped Auburn's hiring of Chizik over Gill.