Oklahoma State put together arguably its best performance of the season against Iowa State in January, trouncing a ranked Cyclones squad 71-42 at Gallagher-Iba Arena.
Cowgirl coach Jim Littell doesn't usually buy into “revenge” games, but he knows ISU probably hasn't forgotten that result as the Cyclones prepare for their rematch against OSU in Ames Monday night.
“They're going to be locked in,” Littell said. “It's a program with a lot of pride, and you know that Coach (Bill) Fennelly has reminded them of (what happened in the last game). We better be ready when we step between the lines, because Iowa State will be.”
Littell spoke with The Oklahoman about the Cowgirls' regular-season finale and the challenges of playing in one of the Big 12's most hostile women's basketball environments.
How will the quick turnaround following Saturday's win against Texas affect preparation for Monday's game?
“It's going to be more mental preparation than physical preparation. We're going to watch a lot of film. We've got some people that are beat up a little bit right now. They'll be fine.”
How confident do you feel going into this game, given the physicality of the Texas contest and the fact that your team is playing with a short bench?
“I feel a lot better going in there after a victory. I don't know how comfortable anybody feels going into Ames. It's a tough venue to play in. Coach Fennelly has been very strong with his program for years, and especially at home. So we've got a big challenge ahead of us.”
What makes it such a tough venue?
“It's their fan base. You're going to have 10 to 11,000 people there that are screaming and live for the women's program and the Cyclone program there. You see it on the men's side now. Just very loyal and knowledgeable fans at Iowa State.”