Most people are going to remember Will Clyburn’s dunks against West Virginia or Tyrus McGee’s six 3-pointers against Kansas. They’ll recall Chris Babb holding Kansas’ Ben McLemore to just six shots at Hilton Coliseum and Korie Lucious’ left handed running bank shot that sealed the victory against Kansas State.
You can tap into Anthony Booker’s performance off the bench on Senior Night as the Cyclones beat No. 13 Oklahoma State. But perhaps the biggest moment for the senior class didn’t even happen on the court.
It was a 6-for-6 performance that didn’t occur in front of a sellout crowd at Hilton Coliseum. It wasn’t on national television and John Walters’ call didn’t send chills down your spine when it happened, but it still took a tremendous amount of hard work and surely there were some big time moments.
The performance I am referring to is six seniors walking away from Ames as graduates of Iowa State University.
Babb, Booker and walk-on Austin McBeth earned degrees in 2012. Clyburn and Lucious joined the club this May and McGee capped off the senior sweep this summer.
For head coach Fred Hoiberg, an Academic All-American himself as a player, the degree is something to be proud of.
“It is such a great accomplishment. I am so proud of the six guys that walked out of here with their degrees,” Hoiberg said. “Not a lot of programs can say they had six seniors and everyone left as a graduate. They don’t have to come back. They took care of their business.”
McGee wrapped up his academic work in the first session of summer school, earning a degree in Liberal Studies. The Stringtown, Okla., native praises the support he received while at Iowa State.
“The coaches and academic staff really stress the importance of getting your degree,” McGee said. “They are always there to help you. I really appreciate the work they do and am proud to be an Iowa State graduate.”
Hoiberg echoed McGee’s statement.
“Our guys get great support and our academic coordinator is very hard on those guys like I instruct him to be,” Hoiberg said. “Arriving on campus can be a bit of a wakeup call for some of them early. They learn pretty quick they need to get their act together, but ultimately they do. I’m just very proud of the guys.”
The accomplishment deserves your loudest standing ovation.
Follow Matt Shoultz on twitter @mjshoultz.