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2023 Tailgate Preview II: CyHawk

It’s a Cyclone State.

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Syndication: The Ames Tribune Nirmalendu Majumdar/Ames Tribune / USA TODAY NETWORK

Like it or not, it’s CyHawk week.

Online, fan bases are trading jabs.

Coworkers are placing bets. (It’s on, Eller, Get that ISU shirt ready.)

Keep in mind, dear friends - it’s a Cyclone State.

How long will you have to stand in the entrance line this time?

If you arrive an hour early, will you bake in the sun?

Maybe pack some sunscreen and a bit of extra patience.

Ultimately, it should be a close game.

Pack the Jack, cross your fingers, say a prayer, light a candle. Let’s go!

Weather: September weather in Iowa can be a mystery, but Saturday looks to be a beautiful day. Warm temps (but not TOO warm), sunny skies, light breezes, and no rain in the forecast. If you’re starting your day nice and early, you’ll probably want to layer up against a bit of a chill in the air…but that just screams football season, doesn’t it?

Food: (Hawkeyes are) Jerk(s) Chicken Tacos

If you follow me on any social media, you know I love to cook and this recipe, you guys…it’s a keeper. It’s one of those things you’ll cook and think, “I can’t believe I made this,” and “I wish I’d made more” and “How did I get so awesome?” I’m questioning whether or not it’s terribly tailgate friendly, but it’s just too delicious to not pass on to you. You could grill the chicken ahead of time and have it in a warmer of some variety. If you have access to a grill at your tailgate, it cooks up in no time. Foods that everyone can assemble to their own tastes are a surefire crowd pleaser. Be prepared to share this recipe because everyone will love it.

Drink: CloneFest

Of all the delightful new beverages linked to our beloved university, this is the first one I tried. I loved it immediately. A “golden festbier lager”, this beer has a nice, warm, fall flavor. My favorite part of this beer might be the can, sporting a beautiful cardinal and gold Iowa State font and a tough Cy who looks like he wants to punch you in the face.

Game: Washer Toss

Once again, Twitter saved the day by coming up with a game for Saturday. I’ve never played this one, but it does look like fun. Here’s an Iowa State version that’s pretty cute. Here’s some rules. Here’s a video if you’re a visual learner.

Song: “You Don’t Know” by Reel Big Fish

A song fit for hate week…

The year is 2001. 19-year-old Megatron, a sophomore in Elementary Education at Iowa State University, is at a Reel Big Fish concert with a cute, muscly guy who makes her laugh harder than anyone ever has. They bond over their love for this music, the clever and silly lyrics, the sharp horns, and avoiding the mosh pit.

The next year they’ll get married on the day of the CyHawk game, which Dan McCarney and his Cyclones will win.

They’ll have two beautiful, exceptional children (one currently at Iowa State and one on her way next year) and celebrate their 21 (!!!) year wedding anniversary.

This weekend feels gross in many ways. Good-natured teasing turns ugly in a hurry. Both fan bases can be a bit…insufferable. But it will always be filled with good memories for me. This is when my precious little family began. So let’s have some fun, make some memories, and enjoy the good this rivalry has to offer.

Your pal,