Iowa Hawkeyes athletic director Gary Barta says despite the Big Ten schedule change, the Iowa State Cyclones are staying on it.
With the Big Ten moving to a nine-game schedule, some wondered if Iowa would move away from the state’s biggest rivalry game. Barta confirmed that they’ll keep them and focus on schools from smaller conferences around them (via Hawk Central).
"“I’ll keep playing Iowa State, and now, the ninth Big Ten game will replace those others, whether it was Pittsburgh or Arizona,” he said."
Back in November, the Cy-Hawk series received an extension all the way until 2021. With Barta still backing the annual series, it’s looking like it will be played, guaranteed, until that year — or until negotiations spark back up again in about 3-4 years.
It’s a solid move to keep the series going. The Iowa State football team is trending in the right direction and will always be worth more to the Hawkeyes in strength of schedule than any of the MAC schools.
If Iowa really wants to push for a spot in the new playoff system, they should consider keeping somebody like Pittsburgh or Arizona. The Big Ten still has bad rep nationally, and if there was every some sort of a mess at the top when Iowa has the credentials to make it alongside SEC teams, top ACC/Big 12 schools, and even Notre Dame, guess who’s getting left out?
Despite some Hawkeye fans denying it when they lose, beating your biggest rival always puts a nice spring in your step early on in the football season. I look forward to the Cy-Hawk game every season. Just like everybody else.