As we approach July, we’re officially 10 weeks away from the first football game of the season against UNI. Naturally, we decided to pass the time by coming up with the fifty greatest football players in Cyclone history.
Our writers put together a list of their own top 50 and then we put together the final list by giving each place a point tally, which led to our final list. Each we week there will be five names unveiled, with the top five being revealed throughout the week leading up to the UNI game. So without further to do, we start with places 50-46.
50. Dave Hoppmann, Running Back 1960-1962
Dave Hoppmann ran for 152 yards and threw for two touchdowns in a 46-0 win over Drake during his Iowa State debut. The following week against Detroit, he set a school total offense record of 320 yards, including 224 yards rushing. Hoppmann led the Big Eight conference in rushing, setting an ISU record for 844 yards rushing on 161 carries during his sophomore season in Ames.
During his junior season, Hoppmann began to make a name for himself on the national stage, rushing for 113 yards in a 21-15 victory over Oklahoma. Hoppmann would put on an unforgettable homecoming performance against Kansas State, tallying a Big Eight Conference and Iowa State record of 271 yards rushing on 25 carries after being hospitalized before the game with an illness. Hoppmann led the nation in total offense with 1,638 yards, earning first-team All-America honors during his junior season. His rushing total of 920 yards broke his own single-season rushing mark from the previous season.
Hoppmann would once again earn All-America honors again as a senior. Against Oklahoma State during the 1962 season, Hoppmann ran for 144 yards to break Dwight Nichols’ Big Eight career rushing mark. He teamed with Tom Vaughn and Dave Hoover against the Cowboys to mark only the second game in school history in which three Cyclones rushed for over 100 yards in the same contest. The Iowa State legend capped off his career with a bang, passing for a career-high 206 yards with scoring strikes of 30 and 44 yards against Ohio University. Hoppmann led the Big Eight in total offense for the third time in a row as a senior and ranked second at the time in Big Eight career total offense with 4,172 yards. His 2,562 yards on the ground topped the Big Eight charts.
49. Jim Doran, Wide Receiver 1948-1950
Jim Doran began his college career at Buena Vista College in 1947 after a short stint in the Navy during World War II. His coaches decided it was best to play him at defensive tackle despite weighing only 175 pounds at the time. After one fall at Buena Vista, Doran made the move to Ames to run track and play football.
During the 1949 season, his first at Iowa State, Doran helped lead the Cyclones to their first winning season in over 14 years with a 5-3-1 record. Doran would make the All Big Seven team after posting 689 yards receiving on 34 catches and breaking the previous Big Seven record by more than 200 yards. That season, Doran set the then-national and school record for single game receiving yards with 203, the record still ranks 3rd all time for a single game in Iowa State history.
During his final season at Iowa State, Doran compiled 652 yards on 42 receptions and six touchdowns as a senior. He would also earn first-team All-American and All-Big Seven honors during his final season in Ames. He was Iowa State’s only football All-American in nearly two decades at the time. Doran closed out his career in Ames owning virtually every Iowa State and Big Seven receiving mark. Currently, his single game record is the only one of those records to still sit in the top ten. Doran was selected to the Iowa State Hall of Fame in 1997.
48. Brent Curvey, Defensive Tackle 2003-2006
To this day, Brent “Big Play” Curvey is considered one of the best to play on the defensive line for Iowa State, ranking 3rd all-time on Iowa State’s career sack chart. During the 2003 season, Curvey made his debut as a freshman, playing in eleven games. His career high actually came as a freshman, recording a total of 14 tackles against Kansas State. Curvey finished the season with 63 total tackles and two sacks.
Brent had a tendency to come up big in critical situations, and make big play after big play. “Big Play” totaled three defensive touchdowns in his career, an extremely high mark for an interior defensive lineman. Arguably, the most memorable of those touchdowns was his pick-six against Colorado in 2005. Curvey sensed a screen pass and stood right in the path of the throw, taking in back to the house for a Cyclone score.
Curvey finished his Iowa State career with 17 sacks and 222 total tackles. The Cyclone defender was named All Big 12 Defensive Lineman in 2005 as well as many awards within the Iowa State program. Before his senior season, Sporting News rated Curvey as one of the nation’s top 20 defensive lineman.
47. Tim Dobbins, Linebacker 2004-2005
Tim Dobbins was an instant impact player for Dan McCarney when he transferred to Iowa State from Copiah-Lincoln Community College in 2004. Dobbins was named Big 12 Defensive Newcomer after the 2004 season. That season, Dobbins recorded 61 total tackles as well as intercepting two passes which included one that helped seal a win over Nebraska. He helped paved the way for Iowa State to snag a bowl win in the Independence Bowl.
During the 2005 season, Dobbins earned all Big 12 honors while making 96 total tackles and one interception. His efforts helped lead Iowa State to the EV1.net Houston Bowl that season. While Dobbins; time at Iowa State was short, his impact on the defensive side of the football will be remembered by Iowa State fans for a long time.
46. Jason Berryman, Defensive End 2003-2005
Jason Berryman may have been one of the most talented players to ever play for Dan McCarney during his time at Iowa State, but he would ultimately find himself making some poor decisions off the field, which led to his dismissal from the team in 2006.
During the 2003 season Berryman burst on to the scene, being named Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year while finishing second on the team with 110 total tackles, leading all NCAA freshman that year. Berryman recorded a career high 16 tackles with one sack against Kansas State that season.
Berryman would sit the 2004 season out after serving a jail sentence, but would return to the team for the 2005 season and lead the Cyclones to the Houston Bowl on the back of 60 total tackles and four sacks. He would play one of his best games in a Cyclone in Houston, totaling 12 tackles and 3.5 sacks in the bowl game, which would be his final game as a Cyclone.