Q: You are going back ‘home’ to play for your final time. What are your feelings?
Ben Cronin: We are all really excited. It will be our first game on the road, things like that. It is a big game this week, just like every game on our schedule. Being from there and this is my last time to go back home, there will be a lot of friends and family at the game and I look forward to see them.
Q: Is it fun going back there and do you remember going back there and beating them a few years ago?
Cronin: Right now its 2005. You forget about the past. They have a great team again this year. Coach McCarney is a great coach and they have a great program; we are looking forward to the opportunity. But it was really exciting to go back and be on the field where I grew up watching some games…I remember back in 6th grade we had a flag football game on that field. It’s probably like it was for Brian Ferentz to play here in Kinnick.
Q: Iowa state has a solid defensive front four; what kind of challenges will they present?
Cronin: They are a fantastic front four. (Nick) Leaders is the leader out there. He is an All Big 12 player and I think he is an All American candidate. He is tough against the run and a great pass rusher. We are really going to have our hands full up front and it will take our best effort. We will have to work hard this week.
Q: Have you had a lot of requests for tickets?
Cronin: My parents have been asking anyone they knew that had season tickets, all the way back to February of last year, so there will be a lot of family there.
Q: You have seen this game as long as anyone, seeing the fans getting so swept up in the rivalry. I am sure people had some words to say to you when you decided for Iowa…does anything bug you about the rivalry?
Cronin: No. That was so long ago, this is my fifth year here. It’s a fantastic rivalry, it’s fantastic for the fans. Iowa State is a great team and we are looking forward to the opportunity to play.
Q: What about dinner tables divided, ‘F-Iowa’ shirts, etc?
Cronin: I don’t know about that. CJ Barkema might have a dinner table divided, they might have to be separated. It’s great for us, it’s great for everyone.
Q: That is just how fans get with these games?
Cronin: I think so. I don’t know where the line is drawn. We love our fans, they love their fans and I think so many people in the state support both teams throughout the year, that makes it so great.
Q: What about t-shirts and fights; is that going too far?
Cronin: I don’t really pay any attention to the t-shirts. We are focused on what game of the week it is. We see that all over the place.