On his post-game radio show Saturday, Fred Hoiberg shared a couple of messages.The first was a "thank you" to Cyclone fans, who have supported his club at Hilton Coliseum all season.
Hoiberg was a part of the Iowa State fan base as a kid and relished his playing career in front of "some of the greatest fans in college basketball."The second message was about his appreciation for the effort of his club despite its short bench and youth. In the last two games, four of the seven players getting significant action were freshmen. Those themes are likely linked. Hoiberg, in fact, described one sequence from the Missouri game when his scrappy Cyclones battled through a possession with multiple players flying out of bounds or diving on the floor. The crowd was on its feet. And, Hoiberg added that the fans deserve to see that type of effort. Perhaps, that’s part of the reason that Hilton has been lively through the Big 12 season. The Cyclones have averaged 11,999 fans per home game in Big 12 play. Schools currently in last place of the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, SEC and Pac-10 are averaging 8,041 fans per home league game. ISU’s attendance norm in conference games is nearly 50% higher than the average of those peers. Iowa State’s fan base is as loyal as they come and Hoiberg appreciates it. "The guys hear that support and respond to it," Hoiberg said. That loyal fan base has two more chances to cheer for this hard-working collection of Cyclones. Iowa State closes out its home season against Nebraska (Feb. 26) and Colorado (March 2). Reader feedback is welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow me on Twitter at: twitter.com/SteveMalchow