Pardon Iowa State fans if they are getting a fever—NCAA tournament fever.
Iowa State stormed back last night from a 14-point deficit to hand Kansas State a tough two-point loss. Royce White shot a jumper with 1.8 seconds remaining for the win.
The victory gave the Cyclones two straight over the state of Kansas (they beat Kansas last Saturday) and improved their record to 6-3 in the Big 12 Conference (16-6 overall).
Beating then fifth-ranked Kansas and usually ranked Kansas State has intensified the NCAA tournament talk around Ames, Iowa. Iowa State fans desperately want to return to the tournament because it has been a long time. The last tournament appearance was in 2005 under coach Wayne Morgan
Iowa State put together a so-so pre-conference season, but the Cyclones have picked up steam in league play. They are in fourth place and if they can maintain the upper conference standing, you have to figure the Cyclones have a decent shot at the tournament.
Cyclone players and coaches are saying all the right things. They are taking it one game at a time. But fans have the future in mind and they are dreaming of a NCAA tournament bid.
Dreams do come true even if you must wait several years. Cyclone fans hope this is finally the year.