IOWA STATE CYCLONES FOOTBALL A TO Z
By: Coach Sloth
Illustrated by: Adam Schartup
Published: February 7, 2017
Publisher: Mascot Books
contacted the publisher to see if they had any similar books about Iowa State.
When they said no, he agreed to write one. Sloth’s IOWA STATE CYCLONES FOOTBALL A TO Z took him two and a half years
to write, mostly because it took a while to get all the logos approved. It was
quite the ordeal, but now that he has gone through it once, he is more
knowledgeable on the process.
of the Iowa State Football excitement. As a former player and coach he used his
own experiences to fill the pages with football knowledge. Whether he is
telling readers about the mascot, Cy, for the letter “C” or telling Hawkeye
jokes on the “R” for Rivalry page, children and adult fans will really enjoy
looking through the pages. Each page offers realistic illustrations and kids
can enjoy looking for Cy hiding on every page.
Side boxes on each page including history of Cyclone football, facts on
the game, or stats on well-known players will keep adults interested and maybe
even reminiscing on their favorite seasons.
favorite Cyclone Fan, young or old.
is living the dream as a children’s author. He grew up near Belmond, Iowa and
has always been a Cyclone fan. Sloth started as a freshman walk-on at Iowa
State in the late 1990’s. By his senior year, he was a starting defensive back
and was part of the team that led Iowa State to win their first bowl game. He
majored in sports management and also received a Master’s in high education.
After college, he spent some time playing and coaching in arena football,
including playing and coaching for the Iowa Barnstormers.
his son Tucker, he realized the author knew nothing about football and the
story was so awful that he threw it away. It reminded him of a story he had
written in high school as part of an English assignment with the character he
created called, Sammy Sloth, a play on his last name. He called his mom and
luckily, she still had the story he had written and illustrated. After making a
few revisions and adding some new characters, including his family, he sent it
out to a few publishers. About a month later, a publisher called and Sammy
Sloth was a reality.
has a hard time playing basketball and baseball. Sammy keeps searching and
doesn’t give up finding the right sport for him. Eventually he finds golf and when
he is told to take a “nice slow back swing” he knows it’s the sport for him.
Sloth states, “Sammy makes the team and finds out golf is his sport.” Sloth
creates each Sammy book to teach a lesson such as never giving up, believing in
yourself, or having patience. He even co-authored one of his books with his son
and one with his daughter.
he began taking his books into the classrooms. Reading has always been
important to him. Sloth states, “Growing up on a farm near in the 80’s, we had
story time every night because there was nothing else to do. Mom would read a
few chapters a night from The Little
House on the Prairie books. As I got older, I wasn’t a huge reader, and
then mom introduced me to the Matt Christopher series of sports themed books. I
had no idea they made books about football and that got me interested in
reading again.” It’s important for him to share the importance of literacy, showing
kids that reading can be fun and there is a book out there for everyone.
horizon. Due to his connections with the arena football league, he has been
able to appear in several movies with football related scenes including “We are
Marshall” and “Leatherheads” as well as “The Dark Knight Rises”. After
publishing eight books, his ninth is nearly published. Right now Sloth is
spending his time reading chapter books with his son for research on writing
his own chapter book for young readers. He is also writing a novel based on the
real story of one of his fellow arena football teammates dying on the field. He
wants to tell the story of his team and coaches and how they overcame the
tragedy. Sloth states, “It’s a ‘We are Marshall’ type of story that I hope will
eventually be made into a movie.”
In the meantime,
Sloth continues to tour elementary classrooms all over the state. He wants to
share the message that literacy is important, finding books that you like make
reading fun, and that reading can take you anywhere. For more on Coach Sloth or to schedule a visit at your school,
you can check out his website, www.CoachSloth.com. If you purchase books from there, he will autograph them before sending