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Tuesday, Sep. 16, 2014

Jared Homan -- World Traveler, and the Cyclones

Monday, January 30, 2012

When Baltimore Ravens place kicker Billy Cundiff pulled his last second field goal attempt to the left, it cost the Ravens a tie in their playoff game a week ago. And with that, a chance to go to the Super Bowl. So, the Harlan high school and Drake graduate became a scapegoat, although it was eleven other Ravens who had blown touchdown opportunities on the three previous plays. The last guy, with all the pressure, gets the glory, or is the goat, with no in between. In basketball the goat is the player who misses a last minute free throw, although his/her teammates missed 15 of 'em during the game.

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After several down years, both Iowa State and Iowa have decent basketball teams, and are building. With a slew of transfers, Coach Fred "The Mayor" Hoiberg's Clones might have the best chance of major improvement this year.

They have a real horse in Royce White, a 6'8" anxiety ridden teddy bear of a boy-man. With hands the size of elephant ears he whips the ball around like it was a softball. Now, if he could only shoot, especially free throws. There is a theory that the reason guys with such huge hands, namely Shaquille O'Neal and Wilt Chamberlain, were such abominable free throwers is just that, two too big hands.

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I have been a Cyclone fan since the mid-1940's, listening to the radio when Harley Rollinger (lettered in 1945, 46 and 47) was kicking field goals and playing both ways at guard. Since Ray and Roy Wehde were star basketball guards. Since Eldon Clement and Sylvester "Sonny" Wilhelmi were starters on good basketball teams. All of them except the Wehde twins of Holstein were from Le Mars, and all played when the conference was the Big Six, then the Big Seven. Eldon Clement and Wilhelmi lettered in 49, 50 and 51, and Wilhelmi led the team in scoring in 1950-51.

In their first year of basketball, 1908, the 'Clones finished just one and one - and wouldn't you know, the lone loss was to long tome nemesis, Kansas. All time, the Cyclones are 249-154 versus Iowa teams. Only three Iowa teams hold a winning percentage against ISU and I'll bet you cannot name two of them. Guess - the answer is below.

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Jared Homan, farm boy out of Remsen St. Mary's, apparently studying linguistics and geography, is well into a decade long world tour. After starring at Iowa State, lettering four years and becoming the all time leader in blocked shots, he had a shot with the Chicago Bulls in 2005. By the way, former Le Mars and Westmar star, Roger Moeller, once tried out with the Bulls.

Homan played on the Maroussi team in Greece for the 2005-06 season, then briefly moved to Korea for the 2006-07 season. In November of '06 he moved to Turkey, signed by Mersin Buyuk Belediyesi. In 2007-08 he was with the WKS Slask Wroclaw in Poland and the next season he moved to Croatia and the Cibona Zagreb club. It was back to Greece for the 2009-10 season, signed by Maroussi where he averaged ten points and five rebounds a game.

He started the 2010-11 season in Italy, with Virtus Bologna, but when he allegedly punched the coach, they waived him and in November 2011, he signed with FC Bayern Munchen, where he is starring. U-Tube interviews with Homan are still running after he starred in two December games, getting 18 points and 12 rebounds in the first.

Jared won the 2008-09 Croatian National Championship with Cibona Zagreb, and the 2009 Croatian National Cup with Cibona Zagreb. He played in the 2008 Polish All Star Game and was a member of the Bulgarian National Team.

He fondly remembers his Cyclone years, especially beating then second-ranked Kansas in overtime, at Kansas, and beating Texas in Austin on Feb. 5, that same year. Jared is undoubtedly the best hoopster out of Plymouth County since Dave Gunther, who was all-Big 10 two years in the late 1950's.

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Iowa Pre-Flight (2-3), and Iowa U (24-42) hold winning records against ISU, as did the Ottumwa Naval Station (2-3), where Ensign Richard Nixon was stationed before requesting sea duty. He had played football, basketball and, ran track in college.

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Remembering Homans, the late Elaine Homan would have been right at home, and probably in the center of, the current Republican presidential candidate controversies. An outspoken conservative, and a former WAC Captain in WWII, her bearing and confidence were overshadowed only by her competence. Once a Regis College, Denver, Colorado, registrar, Elaine also served as Chief Sergeant of Arms of the Colorado House of Representatives.

Don Paulin, 2carpenterdon@gmail.com, 7557 30th Av, Norwalk, IA 50211 - 515-201-7236

By Don Paulin
Been There, Done That