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Tuesday, April 29, 2003
Larry's big night out

By Ted Kluck
Special to Page 2

How did a 47-year-old college basketball coach end up partying into the night with a group of undergrads from a rival school? Page 2's investigative team reconstructs the evening -- and early morning -- of Jan. 21 for Iowa State's Larry Eustachy on the University of Missouri campus.

Larry Eustachy
Coach Eustachy blended in with party-goers for a while ...
9:45 p.m. Cyclones lose to Missouri. Eustachy crosses court wearing black turtleneck, shakes hands with Quin Snyder, thinks wistfully to self, "Boy, I bet the Quin-ster can get any chick he wants in this town."

10:30 p.m. Puts team on bus to airport, claims he has some "other administrative stuff" to take care of and tells players he'll "meet you in Ames sometime tomorrow ... or the next day." Heads back to team hotel for a last-minute shower, shave and shot of Binaca.

10:45 p.m. Tries on faded jeans, pumas, and an old "Greek Week" T-shirt. Wonders if he's trying too hard. Checks suit bag for better party threads.

10:50 p.m. Fashions bedsheet from team hotel into a makeshift toga. Notices graying chest hair, paunch. Decides against it. Reluctantly.

11:15 p.m. Finally puts on black team turtleneck, slacks again. Splashes on healthy dose of Drakkar Noir.

Larry Eustachy
... but later became the life of the party.
11:40 p.m. Inserts "Best of Bob Marley" CD into rental sedan's CD stereo. Remarks on relative "wimpiness" of the system. Swings by apartment complex to pick up "my buddy Josh" (Kroenke, a Missouri player). Quick stop at Liquor Mart for Courvoisier, but too late to make purchase.

11:55 p.m. Gives kid at the door a few bucks, grabs plastic cup. Remarks that the "music seems louder than it did when I was in college." Notices girl in low-cut jeans with thong showing. Forgets about volume.

12:00 a.m. Drinks can of Natural Lite Ice. Smiles at irony of Iowa's highest-paid state employee "slumming" with Natty Lite.

12:15 a.m. Drinks can of Natural Lite Ice. Thinks briefly about Missouri zone defense. Forgets defense when kissed on cheek by a girl that looks like that chick from Dawson's Creek.

12:45 a.m. Drinks can of Natural Lite Ice. Eustachy's recall: "This is where it gets fuzzy."

Larry Eustachy
Who says a 47-year-old basketball coach can't hang out with college coeds?
1:35 a.m. Drinks can of Natural Lite Ice. Kroenke begins to second-guess bringing "the old man" along. Suggests to buddies that he "must be a homeless guy or something" and that he's "never seen him before."

1:50 a.m. Asks DJ if he has "Shout!" by Otis Day and the Knights.

2:34 a.m. Drinks can of Natural Lite Ice. Explains nuances of the fullcourt press to a 19-year-old girl with a major in Business Systems wearing a "Hello Kitty" T-shirt.

2:50 a.m. Notices coed taking practice swings with softball bat. Says, "Mine's bigger."

3:00 a.m. It's getting 'Hot in Herre' ... seriously, the turtleneck is getting a little hot.

3:30 a.m. Yells over music. "Who wants an autograph??!!"

4:25 a.m. Poured into a cab by a kid wearing khakis, a dress shirt, and a backward cap. Promises to return the hospitality if the kid ever gets to Ames. Says, "Don't be strange."

4:35 a.m. Breakfast Burrito at La Bamba's by himself. Thinks, "Those chicks were all over me. I wonder if I came on a little too strong with the basketball stuff."

9:30 a.m. Major headache.