AMES - Even with Terry Allen gone, Iowa State coach Dan McCarney still will face a good friend when the Cyclones play at Kansas on Saturday.
Allen, who has known McCarney since they were teen-agers in Iowa City, was fired as the Kansas coach on Nov. 4. He has been replaced on an interim basis by Tom Hayes, an Atlantic native who coached with McCarney at Iowa.
"I've known Tom Hayes for many years, from back since the 1970s," McCarney said Monday. "He's an excellent coach. I'll sure we'll get Kansas' best shot when we go down there."
Hayes is a 1971 Iowa graduate and, like McCarney, played for the Hawkeyes. They worked together on Bob Commings' staff in 1977 and 1978.
"Dan worked on the offensive side of the ball and I was on the defensive side," Hayes said. "Over the years in coaching we've run across each other several times. He's been a longtime good friend."
They're plotting against each other this week, however, as both seek to break losing streaks.
Iowa State has lost three straight and still needs one more victory to become eligible for a bowl. Kansas has lost five in a row and is trying to get something positive going before the season ends.
The Jayhawks are coming off a 59-0 loss to Texas in Hayes' debut as coach. They finish year against Wyoming on Nov. 24.
"As I told our team, we have got to make sure we've got a short memory and go from here," Hayes said. "We're looking forward to the opportunity. It's our final Big 12 game and an opportunity for us to see if we can get this thing fixed and get a win."
Iowa State could be battling a confidence problem. The Cyclones were sailing along at 5-1 in mid-October and looked to be an attractive bowl team. But they suffered a tough 24-21 loss at Texas A&M, then were beaten soundly by Kansas State and Colorado.
If they lose Saturday, they'll be faced with trying to beat Iowa on Nov. 24 to get that sixth victory.
"I don't really know where our confidence is right now, but I don't think it's as high as it needs to be," running back Ennis Haywood said. "Everybody is disappointed. We're letting each other down."