With no Wisconsin games on the schedule, a trip to Purdue was scheduled to ameliorate the symptoms of withdrawal. On this Halloween day, parking was not terribly difficult to find, but my father insisted on using our grandmother’s handicapped parking permit to be closer to Ross-Ade Stadium. However, the handicap lot was quite a distance from the venue and we learned that disabled individuals received a golf cart ride up to the stadium. We all got a laugh as dad, featuring a Wisconsin hat, hopped aboard the S.S. Cripple and buzzed up the hill toward the game.
Last season, the Badgers ended a double decade losing streak to the Hawkeyes. The game was in Madison and Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez defeated his first boss, Hayden Frye. This year, the battle between these border states would be in Iowa City, where the streak still had a pulse knowing that UW has not won there since “Bennie and the Jets” was a #1 single.
The last time I saw Iowa play Wisconsin, I learned a lesson. I understood why Badger fans have such a sour feeling for the Hawkeyes. The crudeness and cockiness of the players and fans left scratches on the psyche. Wisconsin coach, Barry Alvarez worked for Iowa coach Hayden Frye and the student had yet to beat the teacher. In fact, Wisconsin hadn’t defeated Iowa since 1976 – an ugly streak.
I have not yet seen Iowa in person, but I have heard stories. Their fans travel extremely well and their players had a tendency to be cocky when playing the Badgers. Head coach Hayden Frye was the ringleader of this team, and his successful recruiting efforts in the state of Wisconsin certainly had much to do with the team’s puffed chests. However, this season has not been one to gloat about in Iowa City. The Hawks were riding a four game losing streak coming into Camp Randall Stadium. However, they also hadn’t lost to the Badgers since 1976. Wisconsin came into the game with a record of 4-4-1 and winning was mandatory if they were to expect a bowl invitation. Iowa needed just one victory to secure post-season action.