Iowa State University

1970 Cyclones
(Authentic Reproduction)



During the 1969 and '70 seasons, Majors had his Cyclones wear their "usual" helmets, those that he introduced upon taking over the program in '68, for all of State's home games. However, when on the road, he perhaps wanted to create some excitement among his players and fans and utilized a different helmet design. For these two seasons, the Cyclones wore a Cardinal helmet with a one-inch center stripe that was Sunflower gold in color. On each side of the helmet he used the same diagonally arranged ISU lettering that was on the home helmet but in a contrasting Sunflower gold color. 1969's recruiting, as expected, improved but on the field, none of the QB hopefuls received much protection so that the pass-catching potential of wideout Otto Stowe was limited to thirty-nine receptions  for 508 yards. TB Jock Johnson paced the rushers with 427 yards and the defensive highlights could be summed up with the efforts of All Big Eight DB Tony Washington who made seventy-five tackles and intercepted five. The record again was 3-7. Improvement to 5-6 and playing Oklahoma tough in a 29-28 loss could be attributed to 1970's better talent and good defense. DB Washington was again All Conference and he had help from LB Keith Schroder and a strong pass rush. Soph RB sensation George Amundson who had set a new ISU discus record with a throw of 177 feet as a freshman, was moved to QB where he played well and Stowe caught fifty-nine passes for 822 yards to give him All Conference status. Stowe was a round-two pick of the Dolphins, lasting two seasons with them and playing one each with Dallas and Denver. Kicker Reggie Shoemake was a weapon.
Entering 1971 the team used the same helmet for all games and eschewed the idea of having an alternate road appearance. An 8-4 record, big wins over Missouri and San Diego State and a Sun Bowl berth where losing to LSU hardly dampened Cyclone fever made Majors look like a genuine treasure in Ames. QB was manned by Dean Carlson as George Amundson went back to TB and posted 1316 rush yards while TE Keith Krepfle hauled in thirty-four tosses for 492 yards. The defense was paced by All Conference LB's Keith Schroeder and Ken Caratelli, and NE Oklahoma JC transfer Matt Blair at the monster. The fine kicking of Reggie Shoemake earned him All League honors also. As a sign of solidarity and dedication, many members of the '72 squad began fall camp with shaved heads and ISU's 5-5-1 record got them another bowl bid, in part due to the 23-23 tie with mighty Nebraska. In one of Iowa State's most exciting games in its history, it battled the number-three ranked Cornhuskers down to the final sixty-three seconds when the Nebraska squad, led by Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers, scored the go-ahead TD to make it 23-17. With Amundson back at quarterback, he used forty seconds to move the Cy's to a TD, completing four-of-six passes and hitting WR Willie Jones for the tying score. The ISU crowd stormed the field in anticipation of a huge upset victory but when the playing surface was cleared, the extra point was missed resulting in the frustrating tie. A berth to the Liberty Bowl resulted in a 31-30 loss to Georgia Tech but Majors now had a real team that could tussle with anyone. From the QB position, George Amundson was a dual All Big Eight threat, running for 508 and throwing for 2110, setting a conference total yardage record, earning All Conference and All American honors and the number-one draft status of the Oilers where he lasted for two seasons and then played another with the Eagles. Amundson, a member of the ISU Athletic Hall Of Fame, won the Big Eight MVP of the year over Heisman winner Johnny Rogers of Nebraska, and in total earned seven letters, three in football, and four in track while setting the school discus record. TE Keith Krepfle had another big All Conference season but top WR was Willie Jones with fifty-eight for 1099 yards and Ike Harris added another sixty-two catches for 975. Surprise RB was soph Mike Strachan who led the conference in rushing with 1261. Monster Matt Blair went out for the season with a knee injury leaving All Big Eight DE Merv Krakau to lead the defense. Krakau played for six seasons with Buffalo. The Cyclones played so well week to week that Majors was deluged with offers and took the Pitt rebuilding job, one as daunting as ISU had been. He took them to the National Championship in 1976 and then returned to his alma mater at Tennessee for a number of successful campaigns. Majors completed his coaching career by returning to Pitt in the mid-nineties and retired as a member of the College Football Hall Of Fame. Majors also contributed to the ISU program by grooming a number of assistant coaches who went on to successful careers including Jackie Sherrill, Joe Avezzano, and Jimmy Johnson.
When you strike gold with a new coach, it can be considered luck but Iowa State did it again in 1973, taking Earle Bruce who had guided Tampa to a 10-2 mark and Tangerine Bowl win. Bruce was injured as a player under Woody Hayes at Ohio State and became a student assistant. After being an Ohio High School Coach Of The Year three times, serving as Woody Hayes' assistant at OSU, and doing a sterling job at Tampa, he was ready for the Cyclones. A combined thirteen points led to losses against Colorado, Arkansas, Kansas State, and Kansas but they always played tough in a 4-7 season. RB Mike Strachan had a 1000-plus yard season and was All Big Eight. TE Keith Krepfle who had paced the attack finished his career with a total of ninety-four receptions for 1368 yards and fifteen TD's, and after a season in the WFL became a solid fit for the Eagles for seven seasons and had another with the Falcons. Ike Harris too stopped in the WFL and then had a good career as a wideout with the Cardinals and Saints. All Big Eight CB Barry Hill led the conference with eight INT's while LB's Lawrence Hunt and Matt Blair led the front seven. Blair was named to All American teams with his seventy-seven tackles and had a standout career from 1974 through 1985 with the Vikings, being named to six Pro Bowls and having the NFL record for blocked kicks. The record repeated at 4-7 in 1974 but the defense was tighter with DB Barry Hill moved to safety where he led the Big Eight and was second in the nation with nine INT's. Hill put in two seasons with the Dolphins after finishing his Cyclone career with twenty-one interceptions. Brothers Maynard and Mike Stensrud held down the DT spots with power. WR Luther Blue's twenty-six receptions was augmented by the rushing of TB Mike Williams who filled in for the oft-injured Strachan who still completed his Cyclone career as the first to rush for more than 3000 yards. He had a productive seven-year stint with the Saints. Kicker Tom Goedjen was the All Conference kicker.

If interested in any of these ISU helmets please click on the photos below.