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DJK Gets Cut By Barnstomers

February 28, 2012

Welcome to my 1st blog post. 

I was just out and about and heard a local sportstalk show interview Head Coach Mike Hohensee regarding his decision to cut the former Iowa Hawkeye WR.  Hohensee was asked why DJK (Derrell Johnson-Koulianos) didn’t make the team and Hohensee basically said that he wasn’t adjusting to the fast paced AFL game which is totally different than the outdoor game.  Sounds like a good reason to me, right?  The host said he felt interest in the Barnstormers would decline because of DJK not making the team and asked Hohensee if there was any chance he could be kept “for good PR/On the job training” to help sell tickets.  Hohensee then replied he was “hired to win games,” and (paraphrasing here)….”and wasn’t about to keep someone who couldn’t pick up the game.”

This line of questioning prompted me to start up my blog.  Obviously the show host(s) do not know the AFL coaching background of Mike Hohensee.  To me that question was a slap in his face.  I was the radio engineer for the Barnstormers on WHO Radio when they 1st were formed in 1995 when Jim Zabel did the play by play.  If anyone else reading this was also a fan back then, they know of the great games the Barnstormers had with Hohensee’s Albany Firebirds.  They were classic matchups and always were entertaining.  In fact those two teams developed into quite the rivalry.  Mike Hohensee has been a coach in the AFL for pretty much 25 years.  He knows what he is doing.  To infer to him that his decision to cut DJK was wrong or should be thought over again should be insulting to him.  He is not in the business of “coddling” to home state players.  He is out to get the Iowa Barnstormers back to the playoffs and win an ArenaBowl.  When the Barnstormers announced his hiring, I was very excited for the franchise, because I know Hohensee’s coaching history.

Is DJK’s cut from the team disappointing?  Yes.  I know there were a lot of Hawkeye fans who were excited about getting a chance to see him play at Wells Fargo Arena.  But by no means is it the end of the world.  Fans will still flock to downtown to see AFL games this year.

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