Similar to OU, Iowa State saw its greatest Big 12 success so far around the early 2000s. The Cyclones were coached by Larry Eustachy, who replaced Tim Floyd in 1998 after Floyd left to coach the Chicago Bulls. The two most memorable Cyclones from back then are Jamaal Tinsley (a longtime Indiana Pacer who played last year with the Memphis Grizzlies) and his old teammate, Marcus Fizer.Originally from Inkster, Mich., a Detroit suburb, Fizer came to Iowa State from Arcadia High School in Louisiana. He and Tinsley were both members of Iowa State’s 1997 recruiting class, so he played one year for Tim Floyd. The Cyclones had two rough seasons, finishing 11th and 9th in the league. However, Fizer had an impactful freshman year at forward, averaging just under 15 points and seven rebounds per game. He averaged 18 points and seven rebounds in 32 minutes per game as a sophomore for Eustachy.
The 1999-2000 season was wonderful for the Cyclones. Led by Fizer, who was scoring just under 23 points per game and was named Big 12 player of the year, Iowa State won a rare conference regular season title and also took the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City. The Cyclones were the No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament, and lost to No. 1 seed Michigan State (the eventual champion, led by its own duo of Mateen Cleaves and Morris Peterson) in the regional finals.
While Tinsley elected to stay in Ames for his senior year, Fizer declared for the NBA draft and signed an agent. He briefly re-united with his old coach Floyd as the Bulls selected him fourth overall in the 2000 draft. Fizer’s Bulls teams were miserably bad, never winning more than 30 games in any of his four years there. Meanwhile, the Tinsley-led Iowa State team had another strong season in 2001, entering the NCAA Tournament 25-5, again league regular season champs and a No. 2 seed. However, Fizer was missed in the tournament as Iowa State lost in the first round, shocked by 15 seed Hampton.
Fizer was named to the all-rookie second team in 2001, and his best season statisically came in 2001-02, when he averaged 12 points and almost six rebounds per game for the Bulls. After joining the Milwaukee Bucks’ roster in 2004-05, Fizer’s impact slipped. He played briefly there and with the New Orleans Hornets before going overseas to continue his career.Fizer has played with CB Murcia of Spain, Capitanes de Arecibo of Puerto Rico and then Israeli powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv as recently as 2008.