They used to say Kansas State is our rival, but Missouri is our enemy. Conference realignment has complicated that, but tonight is the dawn of a new era.
Saturday’s win over K-State was fun, but it didn’t compare to the satisfaction of beating Missouri. Other than an irritating penchant for camouflage, Kansas State and its fans don’t bother me. We’re brothers.
Not so with Missouri. I hate everything Missouri stands for. Every victory over Missouri felt like a moral triumph.
This is for Quantrill’s raid.
This is for the time Missouri fans took a shit in my friend’s grill at Arrowhead Stadium.
Now we’re left with no one in the conference to hate, and that just won’t do. May I suggest: Iowa State.
A year ago I almost liked the up-and-coming Cyclones. And to be honest, I have met several Iowa State graduates that are sane, even likable people. For a while I thought perhaps ISU would be my second favorite Big 12 team, filling the void left by Texas A&M.
Instead, this happened.
Oh, and this.
Elijah Johnson received racist death threats after dropping 39 points at Hilton. That incredible game was the second of three satisfying wins over the Cyclones last season. So now I’ve got a taste for it.
Iowa State is the new target of my Kansas rage.
It doesn’t hurt that Iowa State is good. Really good, even. A worthy opponent in a league that’s kind of so-so.
So, I’m not saying you should trip a Cyclone fan or slash any Iowa State tires. (Seriously, don’t.) But if you’re looking for a place to direct your glowering, Ames is your best bet.
This game is bigger than the K-State game. It’s bigger than the Oklahoma State game. This is the team trying to stand between Bill Self and his 10th straight Big 12 title.
Iowa State is the enemy now.
Go get ’em, ‘Hawks.
By the way, I’ve set up a little watch party tonight for Iowa City/Cedar Rapids Jayhawks. We’ll be at The Vine in Coralville shortly before tipoff at 8. If you know KU fans in the area, send them my way! Everyone else, check out the KU Alumni Association’s list of watch sites around the country.