After changing it's NHL affiliation from the Dallas Stars to the Anaheim Ducks, the minor league hockey franchise in Des Moines (the Iowa Stars) needed a new name. Today, they announced that name: The Iowa Chops.
I like it. So, does Keith Murphy. I'm a firm believer that minor league sports clubs need to have local names that are meaningful and fun. It may come from growing up as a Cedar Rapidian and going to Cedar Rapids Kernals games. I'd buy an Iowa Chops t-shirt.
In other central Iowa sports news, Iowa State scored big in the college basketball arms race with the announcement of a new dedicated basketball practice facility today. Such facilities are by no means necessary to the success of a basketball program, in my opinion, (there are gyms all across campus) but since everyone we recruit against has one or is building one we need to stay in the game.
It's a little like having a publicly funded NFL stadium. NFL team owners are loaded with cash and can easily pay for their own stadiums but if you have cities all across the country willing to build a stadium on your behalf with tax dollars, why not?
Back to the new BPF (basketball practice facility), the fact that Dickson Jensen is paying for it is outstanding. You have an Iowa State booster, who own's the AAU program that boasts the top recruit that has ever considered Iowa State (and the best recruit that Iowa State has a shot to get, likely ever), donating millions to the school's basketball program - right in time for said recruit to take advantage of it. Excellent.