Category Archives: Tim

Roundball Oracles – Year 15 Final Results

6 days ago another college basketball season sadly came to an end. While it was one of the most exciting tournaments in history, it was bittersweet as the Cyclones were eliminated in the 1st Round.

Now anybody that watched Iowa State’s mercurial season knew that there was a good chance that would happen. When I saw they were playing Ohio State, I was 95% that they would lose in the 1st Round. Ohio State was a completely garbage team that didn’t even belong in the tournament. Iowa State struggled all season with garbage teams.

Despite that, I still picked Iowa State to win it all in my bracket because I don’t pick against my rooting interests.

I don’t pick Iowa State to lose.
I don’t pick Duke to win the National Championship.
I don’t pick Michigan State to win the National Championship.
I don’t pick Liberty to win a single game.

When the overtime was over in Minneapolis on Monday night, the Virginia Cavaliers were the National Champions and Becky Parmelee won her first ever Roundball Oracles crown. Russell Kennerly won his first ever The Sara for last place adult.

Becky’s name has been added to the List of Immortals:

2019 – Becky Parmelee
2018 – Paul Golden
2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

Paul Golden’s iron grip on the throne has been released.

On the other end of the spectrum, Russell Kennerly adds his name to past “The Sara” winners:

The Sara
2019 – Russell Kennerly
2018 – Robert Henning
2017 – Shannon Bardole
2016 – Laura Priest
2015 – Derrick Gorshe
2014 – Sara Lockner

The trophies will be in their possession shortly.

Here are the final standings:

1 Becky Perky 281 45 281 45 Virginia (112)
2 Linda Bennett 265 45 265 45 Virginia (93)
3 Michelle Haupt 242 40 242 40 Gonzaga (150)
4 Lowell Davis 242 45 242 45 Duke (148)
5 Angie DeWaard 242 41 242 41 Virginia (183)
6 Dawn Krause 239 42 239 42 N. Carolina (146)
7 Sean Clubine 237 44 237 44 Duke (152)
8 Paul Golden 237 43 237 43 Duke (135)
9 Rachel Gildersleeve 237 42 237 42 Iowa St. (125)
10 Jason Baier 236 41 236 41 Duke (159)
11 Jesse Howard 231 42 231 42 Duke (143)
12 Michael Augustin 230 43 230 43 Gonzaga (165)
13 Corey Faust 225 39 225 39 Duke (153)
14 Derek Dohrman 224 43 224 43 Duke (160)
15 Shannon Bardole 224 39 224 39 Gonzaga (138)
16 Cathie Raley 223 41 223 41 Duke (137)
17 Jordan Toot 221 40 221 40 N. Carolina (128)
18 Robert Henning 220 39 220 39 Duke (150)
19 FHMeiners 219 42 219 42 Duke (182)
20 Brandon Kahler 210 40 210 40 Duke (125)
21 Jackson Faust 209 38 209 38 Kentucky (126)
22 Which Mascot Would Win in a Fight 202 34 202 34 Iowa St. (150)
23 Bill Wentworth 202 40 202 40 Duke (105)
24 Ben Baier 201 36 201 36 Iowa St. (173)
25 Derrick Gorshe 201 38 201 38 Duke (128)
26 Christopher Bennett 198 40 198 40 Iowa St. (158)
27 Elizabeth Nordeen 196 41 196 41 Iowa St. (149)
28 Jason Stensland 195 39 195 39 N. Carolina (167)
29 Olivia Baier 195 32 195 32 Yale (155)
30 tim peterson 193 39 193 39 Duke (160)
31 William McAlpine 192 36 192 36 N. Carolina (165)
32 Jorge Rios 189 36 189 36 Iowa St. (150)
33 Sarah Duffel 189 34 189 34 Michigan St. (112)
34 Toby Sebring 185 36 185 36 Duke (144)
35 Joseph Lynch 181 38 181 38 Iowa St. (167)
36 Teresa Kahler 181 35 181 35 Iowa St. (124)
37 Will Baier 177 33 177 33 Duke (164)
38 Jon DeWaard 173 36 173 36 Duke (148)
39 Carrie Baier 170 34 170 34 Michigan St. (177)
40 Laura Priest 166 36 166 36 N. Carolina (155)
41 Sean Gildersleeve 161 31 161 31 Iowa St. (125)
42 Russell Kennerly 160 34 160 34 Villanova (145)
43 JJ Baier 150 25 150 25 Seton Hall (181)

If you are wondering, JJ Baier is 7 years old and isn’t eligible for “The Sara”.

Now that is behind us, it isn’t too early to start looking at what kind of team Iowa State will have next year.

Next year could be a potential step back for the Cyclones. They lose 3 seniors, including their starting point guard in Babb and leading scorer in Shayok. They are also losing Wigginton and THT to the NBA. Talented post Lard has also left the team and intends to transfer.

Iowa State has currently signed 3 players for the upcoming class. Currently, none of the freshman they have signed are highly ranked, but they all have the potential to be solid contributors. 2 in particular will be interesting to watch.

Marcedus Leech is perhaps the most intriguing. He was formerly a 5 star guy and one of the most recruited players in the country. 2 years ago he had a gruesome leg injury similar to the one Paul George suffered. Almost every school backed off, except Iowa State. Leech rewarded the Cyclones for their loyalty. If he gets back to what he was, he will be the steal of the recruiting class.

Tre Jackson is another interesting player. He was under recruited and didn’t really get many major offers until last summer. He is a shooter and a good athlete that recently dominated the Carolinas Classic by scoring 38 points and hitting eight 3 pointers. With so many guards leaving, Jackson will have a shot at getting some playing time.

Luke Anderson is the final commit. He will be a stretch 4 or 5. Even with the loss of Lard, Iowa State is still fairly stocked in the post with Jacobson and Conditt playing big roles this season and with Solomon Young coming back from an injury that sidelined him for a year and a half. That will give Anderson time to add some bulk to his body.

Another newcomer that I anticipate starting for the Cyclones next season is Prentiss Nixon. He sat out last season after transferring from Colorado State. The 6-2 point guard averaged over 16 points a game with the Rams. I anticipate he will be the starting point guard. He might not have Babb’s overall game, but he will be more of a scoring threat from the point.

Adding proven college players in Nixon and Young back to a returning nucleus of Halliburton, Jacobson, and Conditt, the Cyclones will still be pretty decent next season. How good they can be will depend on what a couple players buried on the bench last season are able to bring. Both Zion Griffin and Terrence Lewis were highly regarded coming out of high school. Zion was slowed at the beginning of last season with an injury and never really broke into the rotation. Lewis showed flashes, but got buried on the bench after Lard and Wigginton returned from injuries and suspension. Both could take great leaps next season if they can show some consistency. The potential is there.

The other unknown variable for next season is Iowa State currently has 3 scholarships open for next season.

I expect Iowa State to add 1 more freshman. Possibly Caleb Grill from Wichita. 1 sit out transfer. 1 graduate transfer.

Another possibility would be to leave one of those scholarships open for the 2020 class. As it sits now, Iowa State will only have 2 seniors on next year’s squad in Nixon and Jacobson.

The 2020 class is loaded and Iowa State is sitting in a good spot with a few very highly regarded recruits in Xavier Foster, Dudley Blackwell, and Ben Carlson.

Either way, I can’t wait for college basketball season to start again.

Roundball Oracles – Year 15

It is time once again for the greatest sporting event of year. It is that time known as March Madness. The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Once again, I will be sponsoring a pool. There is not cost to enter the pool, except for pride.

The winner gets a trophy. The dead last place person gets a trophy known as The Sara.

By winning, you get your name etched on the list of immortals:


Past Roundball Oracle Champions:

2018 – Paul Golden
2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

Paul’s repeat championship definitely puts a target square on his back.

But I said that there are 2 trophies. The 2nd trophy, The Sara, goes to the adult that finishes dead last, while trying. A person can not tank on purpose and win The Sara. The reason The Sara winner has to be an adult is that I don’t want to mock children, to their face. Probably a better rule would be that to “win” The Sara, you have to be at least a teenager. I have no problem mocking teenagers to their face. I do it pretty much every Wednesday night at Youth Group.

Past “The Sara” Winners:

The Sara

2018 – Robert Henning
2017 – Shannon Bardole – now Bardole-Foley
2016 – Laura Priest – now Miller
2015 – Derrick Gorshe
2014 – Sara Lockner

The Sara doesn’t have the long storied history of the championship trophy, but it will get there. I have no doubts.

Last year, 35 combatants threw their hats into the ring. Here are the standings from last year:

1 Paul Golden 248 40 248 40 Duke (175)
2 Dawn Krause 243 38 243 38 Villanova (132)
3 Christopher Bennett 243 37 243 37 Villanova (153)
4 tim peterson 232 41 232 41 Michigan St. (165)
5 Michelle Haupt 232 35 232 35 Villanova (182)
6 Nate Miller 230 37 230 37 Villanova (159)
7 Jordan Toot 224 33 224 33 Villanova (108)
8 Corey Faust 223 34 223 34 Villanova (153)
9 Angie DeWaard 221 34 221 34 Villanova (201)
10 Rachel Johnson 219 39 219 39 Kansas (178)
11 Lowell Davis 215 38 215 38 Virginia (152)
12 Benjamin Baier 213 33 213 33 Virginia (112)
13 Derek Dohrman 205 36 205 36 Virginia (155)
14 Cathie Raley 204 35 204 35 Virginia (138)
15 Bill Wentworth 200 34 200 34 N. Carolina (97)
16 Sean Gildersleeve 198 35 198 35 Michigan St. (145)
17 Linda Bennett 195 36 195 36 Kansas (145)
18 Jesse Howard 195 35 195 35 Duke (146)
19 Olivia Baier 188 33 188 33 Virginia (133)
20 Toby Sebring 185 32 185 32 Arizona (148)
21 Russell Kennerly 184 33 184 33 Virginia (161)
22 Jackson Faust 182 32 182 32 Auburn (124)
23 Sean Clubine 173 33 173 33 N. Carolina (151)
24 Jason Baier 173 30 173 30 Virginia (159)
25 Michael Augustin 167 31 167 31 Virginia (186)
26 Brandon Kahler 166 33 166 33 Kansas (133)
27 Nader Parsaei 166 33 166 33 St. Bona. (170)
28 Andree Jauhari 165 32 165 32 Virginia (145)
29 Elizabeth Nordeen 165 32 165 32 N. Carolina (173)
30 Carrie Baier 162 31 162 31 Gonzaga (144)
31 Laura Priest 158 32 158 32 Duke (125)
32 FHMeiners 156 31 156 31 Kansas (167)
33 Becky Perky 152 32 152 32 Kansas (168)
34 Will Baier 148 25 148 25 Marshall (113)
35 Robert Henning 141 28 141 28 Kansas (156)
The rules are as follows:
Round 1 = 1 point + seed
Round 2 = 2 points + seed
Round 3 = 4 points + seed
Round 4 = 8 points + seed
Round 5 = 16 points + seed
Rounds 6 = 32 points + seed
I can tell that you are already sold and just want to know how to get into this competition, so that you can battle it out and possibly get your name on “The List of Immortals”. It is easy enough, just click on the link below:

Roundball Oracles – Year 15

Good luck! I know you will fare well!


The pictures in the folder 10-19-08 are from the Iowa State-Nebraska football game in 2008.

One of the head coaches in the game would go on to win a national championship. The other coach… looks like he got exiled to someplace called Youngstown, Ohio.

Looking through these pictures, it does remind that when conference realignment hit the Big 12 and we lost Nebraska to the Big Ten, they are an opponent that I really miss playing. At least in football. No interest in playing them in basketball. It isn’t just because Nebraska slit their own throat by joining the Big Ten by severing recruiting ties with the state of Texas and now are amongst the worst teams in college football and would make an easy yearly W for Matt Campbell and the boys. I legitimately missing playing them and as much as it pains me to say it, I actually miss their fans coming to Jack Trice every other year. Their is nothing sweeter than rubbing a sweet victory in the face of a pompous Nebraska fan. Not even beating Iowa is that sweet and we all know how obnoxious a faction of that fanbase.

I also miss playing Missouri. Particularly in basketball. Their fans don’t travel like Nebraska fans and they aren’t that obnoxious, but it was a regional school with which Iowa State had a decent rivalry. I really enjoyed the 2 year basketball series Iowa State just had with Missouri. Even though both games ended up being blowouts.

Colorado was a traditional Iowa State opponent. They were the last school to join the Big 8 in 1947. Oklahoma State technically was the school to make it the Big 8 after they rejoined the conference in 1958, but let’s not pick nits here.

The point is, I also miss playing Colorado, but not anywhere near as much as I miss playing Nebraska and Missouri.

The other traitors to leave the conference was Texas A&M. I don’t miss playing them at all. Texas A&M is more like a cult than a school. While it is well-documented that I am fascinated by cults, I don’t want them coming into holy ground like Jack Trice Stadium or into the cathedral that i Hilton Coliseum. Ever. Good riddance to the Aggies.

I do like the Big 12’s current lineup of 10 teams. While the name is stupid when there are 10 schools, the Big 12 can’t become the Big 10 because there already is a Big 10, that has 13 schools. 14 if you count Rutgers. Which I do. Because I am a very charitable person.

I think the Big 12 is the only conference that gets it right. I know the other conferences added schools that don’t really belong because they were chasing television markets for television markets. It was a short-sighted pursuit because Americans are cord cutting like crazy. When all the major conference television contracts are up in 5 years, the way that people consume television will be entirely different. The majority of people won’t be watching content on traditional television channels. They will be consuming through streaming services. ESPN, Fox, and CBS won’t be willing to pay the outrageous fees for broadcast rights that they did 4 years ago. They won’t have the subscriber base that they did back then. Instead, services like Twitter, Hulu, and Amazon Prime and services that probably don’t even exist yet will be entering the fray for broadcast rights. They won’t care about size of television markets. They will be interested in content. It will be at this time that the Big Ten will really regret adding a Rutgers and a Maryland.

2 years ago when the Big 12 looked into adding 2 more schools was a glimpse at the future. The television networks actually paid the Big 12 more money to NOT expand.

This doesn’t mean that the Big 12 couldn’t implode in 5 years. It easily could, but I think it won’t. My best guess is that in 5 years the Big 12 expands and adds Arizona and Arizona State.

My second best theory is that conferences are broken up and the Power 5 schools and maybe a couple others are put into geographical districts. Kind of like high school football. At least in football.

But none of that isn’t why I think the Big 12 gets it right. I think they get it right because as a fan of a Big 12 school, I get to watch Iowa State play every single other school in their conference in football. In basketball, Iowa State gets to play a home and road game against every other team in the conference. It is the only conference where the regular season title actually means something. I love that, but I mostly love getting to play everybody in the conference. Instead of, and for example, Iowa only plays Ohio State in football about once every 8 years. That isn’t an exaggeration. Look it up.

That being said, in my dream world, the current lineup of the Big 12 isn’t what I would go with. In my dream world, I would get rid of West Virginia because geographically they just don’t belong. I would be a little bit sad to see them go because I legitimately hate their basketball team and can’t stand their ex-football coach. Their are seeds of a rivalry there. However, they belong in an east coast conference. They belong in the ACC. They certainly belong in the Big Ten more than Rutgers. I’d give them an edge over Maryland as well.

I would also kick out Baylor. Their football programs rape culture is an absolute disgrace. Not only should they have been kicked out of the Big 12, their football program should have been closed down.

Then I would bring back Nebraska and Missouri. This would make a pretty sweet conference:

1. Iowa State
2 Nebraska
3. Missouri
4. Kansas State
5. Kansas
6. Oklahoma
7. Oklahoma State
8. Texas
9. Texas Tech
10. Texas Christian

It actually wouldn’t take too much pressing for me to want to kick out TCU and put Colorado back in. Nothing against TCU, but I don’t like competing against private colleges because they aren’t subject to the same open records policies that public universities are.

All the being said, here are some pictures from the Iowa State-Nebraska game:

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

Iowa State vs. Nebraska

I don’t know what the final score of this game was, but I’m sure it wasn’t pretty. The Gene Chizik era at Iowa State ended with 10 straight losses. Most of them were beatings.

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Gallery I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entry to its original glory:

Nebraska Debacle

Next week’s walk down memory lane will involve women fighting for the right to vote. No, really.

Blessings – 2018

I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! It is the time of year where we are supposed to count our blessings.

I thought I would share a few of my current blessings:

I am blessed with a great family!

Sympathy - Brandon Kahler



Bethany - Boredom

Elainie - Boredom

Fear - Alexis

Anger - Johnathan

Sadness - Logan

I have plenty of friends that share my love for the Cyclones!

Iowa State 30 #6 West Virginia 14

Liberty Bowl Road Trip

I have a job I don’t hate going to, where I work with several people I don’t want to punch in the face.

Iowa State vs. Texas Tech

Iowa State vs. Texas Tech

I have an amazing church family!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018

Houston Mission Trip - 2018

Houston Mission Trip - 2018

Pufferbilly Days Float - 2018

Critter Sunday - 2018

Easter - 2018 - Boone FUMC

I have an amazing friends family!

Anders - Fear

Shannon with her

Iowa State Fair - 2018

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

2009 - Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest Nominee

I’m blessed to share my life with Naima!

August 23, 2017

This is really just a handful of the blessings in my life! But I’m already getting this out late, so I’ll cut if off here. I’ll just end with a passage from a Rob Bell NOOMA video that really spoke to me:

“So the verse in First Timothy, it says command those that are rich to not put their hope in wealth… and then it goes on and it continues… and it says, but to put their hope in God who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.

That phrase, a God that richly provides us with everything. All that we have is a gift.

Food. It is a gift.

Clothes. Gift.

Roof. Gift.

That breath you just took. It’s a gift.

Now there are some that will say: No, you don’t understand. I’ve worked for what I have. I deserve it. It is mine. But like it says in the book of Deuteronomy, Chapter 8: You may say to yourself, my power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me. But remember the Lord your God, because it is God that gives you the ability to produce wealth.”

I thank God for the embarrassment of riches in my life!

Roundball Oracles – Year 14

I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that’s real
The needle tears a hole
The old familiar sting
Try to kill it all away
But I remember everything
What have I become
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end
And you could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt
I wear this crown of thorns
Upon my liars chair
Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
Beneath the stains of time
The feelings disappear
You are someone else
I am still right here

It is done. College basketball is over for another season.

In 11 days Iowa State football will hold their Spring Game. After that, the only sports worth watching until college football kicks off in 5 months is the NBA Playoffs. I’m not sure what I’ll do with my spare time. Maybe I’ll clean my house. Now I’m really depressed.

Who isn’t depressed?

Paul Golden, that is who! For the second straight year, he is cutting down the nets for the Roundball Oracles. His name had been added to the List of Immortals:

The List of Immortals

2018 – Paul Golden
2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

One more trophy and he will tie Willy and Mark for the most crowns ever!

I held onto Paul’s trophy from last year, when in became apparent he might win again, so I don’t have a picture of Paul with his trophy yet. But when I do, I’ll share it here.

I do however have a picture of last year’s The Sara winner:

Shannon with her
Shannon with The Sara

However, Shannon did not have the guts to come back and defend her The Sara Title. Therefore, there is a new The Sara “Winner” this year.

“Congrats” to Robert Henning for being the last place adult, that tried to win. I have went over his bracket with a fine tooth comb and even though he picked Kansas to win it all, it would seem he was trying to win in good faith. He joins the List of Mortals:

The List of Mortals

2018 – Robert Henning
2017 – Shannon Bardole
2016 – Laura Priest
2015 – Derrick Gorshe
2015 – Sara Lockner

There were 35 entrants this year. A slight dip from past years, but that was to be expected with the lack of any local teams in the tournament. Most of us adopted Loyola as our team, since they were powered by former Cyclone Clayton Custer.

However, it was a clean, close competition. Michigan’s defeat of Loyola in the Final Four left it down to just Rachel and Paul battling it out for the trophy. Villanova’s complete shellacking of Kansas gave Paul the repeat.

But you didn’t come here to listen to any of that tommyrot. You want to see the final standings:

1 Paul Golden 248
2 Dawn Krause 243
3 Yours Truly 243
4 tim peterson 232
5 Michelle Haupt 232
6 Nate Miller 230
7 Jordan Toot 224
8 Corey Faust 223
9 Angie DeWaard 221
10 Rachel Johnson 219
11 Lowell Davis 215
12 Benjamin Baier 213
13 Derek Dohrman 205
14 Cathie Raley 204
15 Bill Wentworth 200
16 Sean G. 198
17 Linda Bennett 195
18 Jesse Howard 195
19 Olivia Baier 188
20 Toby Sebring 185
21 Russ Kennerly 184
22 Jackson Faust 182
23 Sean Clubine 173
24 Jason Baier 173
25 Micky Augustin 167
26 Brandon Kahler 166
27 Nader Parsaei 166
28 Andree Jauhari 165
29 Liz Nordeen 165
30 Carrie Baier 162
31 Laura Priest 158
32 FHMeiners 156
33 Becky Perky 152
34 Will Baier 148
35 Robert Henning 141

The good news is that next year is that the state of Iowa won’t be shutout of the NCAA Tournament. If nothing else, the first two “real” rounds will be held in Des Moines. Plus Iowa has a lot of young talent that will be back next year. Admittedly, they still have the same sub-par coach, but they should be good enough to go dancing for a short while.

Iowa State on the other hand will be one of the most interesting teams in the country. This year’s team was very young and was decimated by injuries. The only major loss from last year’s team is Donovan Jackson, which Kansas fans know, is a major loss. However, assuming Lindell Wigginton comes back (and almost everybody assumes he will), they return a future first round pick in Wigginton and fellow freshman stud Cam Lard. Plus you bring Babb and Solomon back from injuries. Bring back a big time contributor down the stretch in Zoran Talley. A much improved Terrence Lewis will fight for playing time with super impact transfer Marial Shayok and impact transfer Michael Jacobson. Then add stud freshman Talen Horton-Tucker to the mix. One guy you don’t want to sleep on is Zion Griffin. Plus they are adding Tyrese Halliburton and George Conditt. I don’t expect those 2 to contribute next year, but they will be huge in the coming years.

This will be the most talented roster since Iowa State had 5 NBA players on the roster a few years back. That team lost in the first round of the tourney. I expect much bigger things from the Cyclones next year. The future is bright in the Cyclone State!

Roundball Oracles – Year 14

It is once again time for the Roundball Oracles NCAA Tournament Pool.

I want to start by saying that Paul and Shannon, your trophies for last years accomplishment and “accomplishment” are on order. They will be in your possession by the end of next week.

Here is the proof that I ordered the trophies:

The pool is your pretty standard pool. Pick the games. Pick the final score of the championship game. Win a trophy. This year, I’ll deliver on the trophy much earlier.

The pool doesn’t cost anything, but pride, but the winner gets a trophy and the last place adult (that tried) gets The Sara Trophy.

Here is a list of past champions.

The List of Immortals:

2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

Last year 38 people took their shot at mortality. Paul Golden came home the winner. Shannon Bardole came home with The Sara.

Last Year’s Standings:

1 Paul Golden 260
2 Frank Meiners 252
3 Angie DeWaard 247
4 Michelle Haupt 242
5 shawn lockner 238
6 Jen Ensley-Gorshe 231
7 Jorge Rios 231
8 Andree Jauhari 226
9 tim peterson 226
10 Jordan Toot 225
11 Carrie Baier 225
12 Toby Sebring 224
13 Lowell Davis 222
14 JJ Baier 221
15 Logan Kahler 220
16 Jason Baier 218
17 Dae Hee Yoon 213
18 Jackson Faust 211
19 Dawn Krause 209
20 Jon DeWaard 208
21 Nader Parsaei 204
22 Derek Dohrman 203
23 William Baier 202
24 Robert Henning 194
25 Christopher Bennett
26 Bill Wentworth 193
27 Rachel Johnson 192 36
28 Russell Kennerly 190
29 Nate Miller 189
30 Michael Augustin
31 Derrick Gorshe 181
32 Elizabeth Nordeen 164
33 Laura Priest 162
34 Corey Faust 160
35 Jill Gorshe 152
36 Shannon Bardole 149
37 Olivia Baier 143
38 Benjamin Baier 121

If you are interested in participating this year, drop me an email and I’ll get you hooked up.

If this post seems kind of low energy, don’t worry, Iowa State and my passion for the tournament will be back again next year!

Relationship Goals

I hope all of you had a marvelous Thanksgiving weekend! I had a particularly great Thanksgiving weekend myself.

On Thursday morning I got up and went down to the church (Boone First United Methodist represent!) to take photos of our annual Thanksgiving. This is the second year in a row I’ve photographed the event. From the initial looks, I’d say that we served more than double what we served the previous year.

After hanging with the church family, I went to my Mom’s house for my family Thanksgiving. As usual, it was great. As usual Mom’s cooking was on point. Teresa’s French Silk Pie was delicious as usual. We watched SING and Alexis put up the Christmas tree.

Friday I got up and did some G33 classified business, but it was lots of fun. Even though the cheating was even more rampant than usual.

At noon I went to the Wal-Mart and rang the bell for the Salvation Army. One of my favorite things to do every year. For the people watching aspect alone.

Friday night I went to Boxholm and had a supper prepared by Becca and Bethany. It was kind of a surreal experience because we had the meal in Shorty and Doris’ home. All their stuff is still there, but now their stuff is accented with Tim’s style. Which isn’t bad, but it is weird. However, Bethany and Becca rocked the meal. Turkey and duck?!? Insane!

Saturday morning Dae Hee and I hit the road for Manhattan to see Nate and Laura, plus watch the Iowa State Cyclones battle the Kansas State Wildcats in football. On the way down there we stopped at a Waffle House in St. Joe’s because we were hungry and I love me some Waffle House. However, the Waffle House experience was marred with tragedy. I was mistaken for an Iowa Hawkeye fan by a group of Nebraska fans. It took me awhile to figure out that they had mistaken me for such a low beast as a Hawkeye fan because I was blatantly dressed like a Cyclone fan. It just put a pall on the entire experience. I couldn’t even properly enjoy the road waffle that Waffle House generously gifted us.

The rest of the trip to Manhattan went without incident. Mostly Dae Hee sleeping and me explaining every song of HAMILTON to a sleeping Dae Hee.

We lunched at a place called Bourbon & Baker. It is a small plate restaurant and I would recommend it. I’d highly recommend their chicken and waffles and that isn’t just my love for waffles speaking. #wafflelife

After lunch Nate and Laura dropped us off at Vampire Stadium. Nate scored us great free seats from some old retired professor dude. We sat on the 40 yard line in actual seats. Other than them being in literally the smallest rows in the history of rows and being surrounded by Purple Kansans, it was a great experience. Until the 4th quarter. When all of a sudden it was as if the Vampire had called up Bill Self and asked to borrow his personal refs.

I’m not blaming the loss on the refs. Iowa State certainly aided Purple Kansas with horrible play calling, but I can say with 100% certainty, I’ve NEVER seen a time where the referees threw 3 flags on one team and picked them all up. Not in an entire season. Not in an entire game. Not in an entire half. Not in an entire quarter. Definitely not in a 5 minute period.

What particularly hurt is when Kansas State blatantly interfered with Iowa State’s all-world receiver Allen Lazard. The refs threw the flag, because it was pretty blatant. Then got together. Picked up the flag and then tried to pretend that they were decent human beings, which they obviously are not. If they make the correct call there, the game is over and Iowa State leaves Manhattan with a victory and all is right in the world.

But I think this tweet by Lazard really puts a comedic spin on the deal:

Relationship Goals

What made the loss almost worse is the fact that Purple Kansans are so incredibly nice. At least 15 of them came up to me or Dae Hee to thank us for coming to their stadium. To tell us that we have a great team. It was a great game. In my state of mind at the time, I almost would’ve preferred an obnoxious Hawkeye or Husker or Jayhawk fan.

I’m pissed. Don’t be nice to me.

After the wave of Purple Kansas Nice finally finished washing over us, Nate and Laura picked us up and Road Rage Laura took us to dinner at the Taphouse. Another Manhattan eatery I would recommend. Their Korean Wings are delicious. Their house brewed root beer was good, but not great. Very strangely they served it on ice. Must be a Purple Kansas thing.

Then the final twist of the knife came when I got a snap from somebody that was eating pizza from The Adobe. I’ve been badly hankering for some pizza from The Adobe for quite some time now. I guess that is my own fault for not just going myself.

After dinner I cashed in my chips and called it a night. I was physically and emotionally drained.

Nate got a text in the morning from Bethany that Nora was sick. We decided to skip breakfast and hit the road.

On the way out of town we stopped at Manhattan Hill. 8 AM. The only people there were Cyclone fans. It was universally agreed upon that we were all still pissed. We hopped in the car and headed home. That little Manhattan Hill therapy session definitely helped my mood a bit.

But I really brought you here to share some photos from church’s Thanksgiving meal:

The church server 521 meals on Thanksgiving! What an incredible blessing!

Won’t Take that Credit; I know Where We Get It; Them Blessings Be Comin’ from God Above

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Rather than my standard picture of an inflatable turkey, thought (with apologies to Lecrae, I’d give thanks for some of the many blessings in my life.

Count it up, count it up, count it up.
Line ’em up, line ’em up, line ’em up.

Bennett 2017 Family Photo
Blessed with a tremendous biological family. Blessed to share DNA and a life with these people.

Blessed to be a part of Olivia’s family. Blessed to learn a new definition of the word “family” from Shorty and Doris.

Mission Trip  - Day 0
Blessed to be a part of an incredible church family. From Youth Group to Methodist Men to the people I see in the pews on Sundays.

Thanksgiving - 2017
Blessed to have a job and double blessed to have a great work family. 7 AM comes pretty early, but so many of the people I work with make the struggle worth the effort.

Blessed to share a life with this band of brothers. Not one of us has any fashion sense, but I’d still take a bullet for any of them.

Blessed to fit in with this band of sisters as well.

Movie Club
Blessed to be able to share my love of weird cinema with like minded individuals once a month.

October 28, 2017
Blessed to be a Cyclone and double blessed to have somebody to share so many trips to Jack Trice (a spiritual place for me) with.

Blessed to have a roof over my head that belongs to me. Blessed that I can extend that roof over friends and family when their life needs it. Blessed that when I say, “Want to help paint by house?” 20+ people show up.

Blessed that friends from past jobs are still important pillars of my current life.

The Howard Children
Blessed that people that aren’t related to me consider me an uncle to them.

August 15, 2017
Blessed to have a car that I can drive out of town and not worry about the tire falling off.

Blessed to have so many people in my life that when I say, “I’m coming to your city”, they say, “You’re staying with us right?”

Tenderloining at Nick's
Blessed to have so many people in my life that fill gaps.

Selfie Project - March 5
Blessed that even though I’m aged, I still healthy enough to still ball. Although pretty poorly these days.

Selfie Project - January 27
Blessed that even though I’m aged, I still have people in my life that keep me young.

Selfie Project - January 21
Blessed to have people in my life that want to change the world for the better, when I get cynical.

Selfie Project -January 14
Blessed to have art in my life.

May 25, 2017
Blessed to have a beautiful beard. Even if the old guys at my church hate it.

Blessed to have people who will help with projects like this, no questions asked.

Photo of the Day 0003 - May 5, 2014
Blessed to share a life and a domicile with this crazy beast. Teaches me about selfless love every single day.

June 28, 2017
Blessed to have a chance to spread my blessings to others, sometimes, with some of my favorite people.

This is just the tip of the iceberg of my blessings. But I don’t want it to start to sound like I’m bragging.