A less than appetizing start for both Northwestern and Iowa had many questioning the relevance of this game. Both squads had suffered losses to FCS division teams and it appeared as though mediocre was the mark to make this year.
The subpar beginnings coupled with a drizzly day in Iowa City didn’t drown enthusiasm, though. Fans decked in yellow and black flooded campus for the 11AM kick. Herky Hawkeye made his rounds while folks guzzled their morning brew. The band grabbed a tight grasp on the attention of tailgaters, and smiles still seemed to be lingering from last season’s Rose Bowl run.
Kinnick Stadium was alive as usual – one of the best venues in the nation. The Hawkeyes “swarmed” onto the field and gameday was set. However, both teams appeared to have put the flaws of the first four games behind them. Turn the calendar, turn the tide. October was a new start.The Wildcats and Hawkeyes traded punches all game until NU began to pull away in the fourth. That’s when the precipitation began to produce more poncho appearances, thus dramatizing an eventual loss for the home team.
No Victory Polka today.
For the ‘Cats, it was a new beginning – a reminder of how good they can be.For the Hawks, it was a reminder that maintaining a successful program is challenging. Fortunately, there is more season to prove worth.