ISU in Eddie Robinson Classic, 2002

Jeremy Gustafson

The 2002 Cyclone football season will open against the Florida State Seminoles, the two-time national champions, in a game that could bring in as much as $1 million.

Iowa State will kick off against the Seminoles in the Eddie Robinson Classic Aug. 24, 2002, at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. The Eddie Robinson Foundation – an organization that benefits minority students – announced the face-off Thursday afternoon.

Eddie Robinson was the legendary coach at Grambling State University. He coached until he was 75 years old and amassed 408 career coaching wins.

“It’s a real credit to [head] coach Dan McCarney and his staff,” said ISU athletics director Bruce Van De Velde. “It will put Iowa State on a national stage.”

FSU athletics director Dave Hart said he has known Van De Velde over the past few years and the two have talked “at length” about a possible matchup between the two teams.

“[Iowa State] is in a conference we have a lot of respect for,” Hart said. “I have a lot of respect for Bruce.”

The game could mean a payoff as high as $1 million for the ISU Athletic Department, Van De Velde said. He said expenses for the game would come out of that amount.

Van De Velde said there will be a student discount on tickets, as 5,000 seats have been reserved at a price of $20 for the 7 p.m. game.

In their only previous showdown, the Cyclones beat the Seminoles 10-6 at Florida State in 1975.

Florida State played in four national championship games since 1993 and have won the national championship twice. Last season, the Seminoles lost 13-2 in the national title game against Big 12 champion the University of Oklahoma Sooners.

Iowa State, the 2000 Bowl champion, posted a 9-3 record last year – the team’s first winning season since 1989.

Still, Hart said FSU coach Bobby Bowden and the Seminoles aren’t taking Iowa State lightly.

“Our football team will go into that game with the utmost respect for [the ISU] program,” Hart said.