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Remembering Stevie Hicks A Decade Later

It’s been ten years since the passing of one of Cyclone fans’ favorite players ever.

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NCAA Football - Iowa vs Iowa State - September 10, 2005
Stevie Hicks (27) bowls over Chad Greenway (18). Iowa State beat #8 Iowa 23-3.
Photo by G. N. Lowrance/Getty Images

Ten years ago today, the Iowa State community lost one of its own in Stevie Hicks. The Omaha native ran for 2,601 yards from 2003-2006, scoring 11 total touchdowns.

I. Creighton Prep

II. Rising Star at Iowa State

III. 1,000+ Yards in 2004

IV. Nagging Injuries

V. Recollections of Stevie

VI. More Photos

VII. Career Game Log

I. Creighton Prep

In 2001, Stevie Hicks said the following about his recruitment: “My favorites right now would be Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska, Wisconsin, and probably Texas A&M, I might be going down to Texas A&M to visit this weekend as my mom is going down to Austin to visit my uncle.”

“I think I can be a work-horse running back,” he said in a 2002 Cyclone Report article. “I like Eddie George and Jerome Bettis the best, the bigger backs. They’re tough and always go 100 percent. Then I have the break-away speed, too.” Stevie was a four-star back, with offers from Nebraska, Iowa, and Iowa State, and Michigan showed late interest.

“I’m 100 percent to the Cyclones,” he eventually told Cyclone Illustrated. “I’ve been with them the whole time.”

For those interested, here is a 2000 video of #1 Creighton Prep taking on Omaha Westside. This video shows is from his junior campaign in which he rushed for 1,220 yards and 14 touchdowns. He scores at the 9:03 mark as well as at 29:29.

Tony Yelk (14), myself and Stevie Hicks (27) in 2003.

Hicks made his first appearance in local newspapers with this snippet from The Courier on February 7, 2002, for signing day:

“McCarney recruited just one running back this winter, but that was by design. He’s Steven Hicks, a 6-2, 210 pounder from Omaha.

‘From the beginning we told Stevie Hicks that we’re signing one running back and you’re the No. 1 pick,’ said McCarney. ‘He’s special. He’s got great feet, another gear and excellent speed. He’s got a bright future.”

II. Rising Star at Iowa State

The 2002 ISU Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year had a slow start in his first collegiate game with 12 rushes for 19 total yards while hampered with one of the many injuries that plagued his career.


During Vince Young’s first collegiate start in 2003, Stevie was the leading Cyclone rusher with 67 yards on 11 attempts.

Nebraska’s Jay Moore (44) has some trouble reaching Iowa State’s Stevie Hicks (27) as he rushes towards Nebraska defensive line Saturday during their game in Ames, Iowa.
Gerik Parmele

During the last game of the 2003 season against Mizzou, Hicks finally got his first 100+ yard game as a Cyclone with 123 yards on 28 carries.

III. 1,000+ Yards in 2004

Iowa States Stevie Hicks takes a walk with Rylan Alford, 4, son of assistant head coach Tony Alford during Thursdays football media day at Jack Trice Field.
MATTHEW PUTNEY / Courier Staff Photographer

Stevie had a phenomenal 2004 campaign, rushing for 111 yards in the season opener against Northern Iowa.

He then scored his first collegiate touchdown in 2004 with 41 seconds left to beat Baylor 26-25. A couple weeks later, he helped Iowa State come from behind in a road win against Kansas State.

Hicks continued his success, finishing with 1,062 rushing yards in 2004. His career game came against Miami (OH) in the 2004 Independence Bowl.

Miami of Ohio v Iowa State Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

In the bowl game, he was the leading rusher with 159 yards on 27 carries, including a 41 yard dash in the fourth quarter which led to him receiving Offensive MVP honors.

Miami of Ohio v Iowa State

IV. Nagging Injuries

In 2005, he had limited production due to various injuries. However, he eclipsed the century mark three times: against Iowa with 118 yards, Texas A&M with 122 yards, and Kansas State with 149 yards.

2005 Media Guide

His last playing appearance would be in 2006 against the Red Raiders.

ISU running back Stevie Hicks escapes a tackle Saturday, October 21, 2006 in the 42-26 Cyclone defeat at the hands of Texas Tech in Jack Trice Stadium. Hicks rushed for 56 yards in the first half but sat out the second half due to injury. The Cyclones fall to 3-5 overall and 0-4 in conference play.
File Photo: Iowa State Daily

V. Recollections of Stevie

Stevie was well received by those who knew him best.

“Stevie was my roommate when we stayed in hotels for games. He was always good for a laugh. Stevie was a beast on the field. It was a blast getting to play with him.” - Kyle Van Winkle, former ISU QB

Former Iowa State head coach Dan McCarney, congratulating Stevie Hicks following a play in 2006, returns to Ames this weekend as part of the school’s Hall of Fame class.
Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette

“Stevie was the quiet ass kicker. Didn’t say much. Had that Hollywood smile until gameday and then he would try to embarrass any defensive player by running over or making you miss him. One of the many great running backs we had during my 12 years. Fantastic teammate. Coachable. Always rose to the challenge. Loved the Cyclone Family.” - Former Head Coach Dan McCarney

“Stevie was a quiet guy in public and with the media but hilarious with his friends/teammates. After taking a big hit you could always hear him laughing at the bottom of the pile. I’ll never forget him scoring a TD at Tx A&M and taking off his own helmet at the bottom of the pile so he could shake his dreads on national TV.

Played hurt most of his career at ISU but never complained. Couldn’t rap but still tried to freestyle in the locker room. Couldn’t dance but almost got a flag at Baylor for trying to after he scored. He was tough and physical on the field, but off it he was quiet and kind to everyone he met. I miss him.” - Todd Blythe, former Iowa State Wide Receiver

“My memories of Stevie were that he always ran very hard. He was talented to be sure, but I think the reason he succeeded at this level was that he never took that talent for granted. He ran with a purpose on every play. Dan McCarney had a nice string of successful backs with Troy Davis, Darren Davis and Ennis Haywood – and Stevie took the torch from them and ran with it – literally.” - John Walters

“Stevie was a huge get when Iowa State snagged him out of Omaha, he really was one of the statement recruits that Iowa State and Dan McCarney were making progress. Stevie ran so hard. I remember a couple of games specifically where he was at his best. The Independence Bowl in 2004 he was a man against Miami. They needed 2-3 guys each carry to bring him down, it felt like a middle school football game where the biggest kid was impossible to tackle. He was also so impressive in 2005 in wins over Iowa and Texas A&M. Iowa State didn’t have the best offensive line, but when they needed yards, Stevie would find a way. In the second half against Iowa, it was pretty much give the ball to Stevie and he took over. They tried to load up to stop him and he still got first downs to wind down the clock. When Stevie was healthy, he was a force. Off the field, Stevie was always smiling and friendly to everyone. It always seemed like he was the most popular guy on campus. Everyone enjoyed being around Stevie.” - Brent Blum

If any of you have any special recollections about Stevie, please leave them in the comments below.

VI. More Photos

Embed from Getty Images

VII. Career Game Log