That's fine if you see it that way for you personally, but when you say "This game is at least as big as conference games to the fans, coaches and players of both teams. People who try and pretend different are kidding themselves.", youre putting words in other people's mouths, and that's why you're getting disagreement. I get why people like the game, but at the same time people can differ in opinion without 'pretending different'.
In my experience, Hawk fans will downplay this game the weeks leading up to it as it just another non-conference game. But their actions on game day speak differently - the emotions take over. Tailgating in Iowa City is full of energy on Cyclone game day. They want to win this game so bad. Other games do not have that kind of excitement surrounding them. That is my experience. And when they lose this game they are crushed unlike any other game they lose. I think most people who have been to this game with an Iowa fan or been near Iowa fans in the stadium have seen the same thing.
On the other side I don't think many Cyclone fans downplay this game. Sure there are some that don't think this is that big of a game but there are more Cyclone fans that think this is the biggest game of the year than not in my opinion. It is personal for so many Hawk and Cyclone fans why would it not be this way?
Look I am speaking from my experiences both generally and personally and overall I think this rivalry makes it the biggest game of the year for both fan bases.
Is the Iowa game more important than a conference win? Depends on the season and the conference team you're talking about.
If we were in the hunt for a Big 12 title, then yes, a conference win is more important. If not, I'll take a win over Iowa vs.Texas Tech any day. If it's OU, I'll take that win over Iowa ever year.
Clone to the Bone with the up and coming IOWA STATE.
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