Our Iowa Heritage Index: Hawkeye Football Through The Ages.

As you can see, our growing website Our Iowa Heritage covers a lot of time (pre-1800 to the present) and a lot of people. We’ve written about famous people and the not-so-famous ones as well. Yet, despite a person’s prominence (or lack of it), everybody has a story. And as you read our posts, you’ll hopefully discover that everyone’s story is a good one. So, in order to better find these good stories and details surrounding them, we’ve added this INDEX of HISTORICAL ACCOUNTS to help you along the way. Enjoy your journey.

Our Iowa Heritage: An Introduction. We might suggest you start here! Here’s how & why I got started collecting stamps, coins, and other Iowa memorabilia.

George Boller: A Hawkeye Football Nut. In 1976, Al Grady, long-time sports editor for The Iowa City Press-Citizen, featured an amazing article on my dad – George Boller. The occasion was his 50th Iowa football homecoming, and the article gave readers a wonderful overview of my dad’s only unhealed addiction: Rooting for the Hawkeyes from his earliest days in Wayland until 1976.

The Hawkeyes Take The Field. Athletics and the University of Iowa have always gone hand-in-hand. Over the years, the Hawkeyes have played in a variety of different facilities – from a small basement gym to an armory built for military drills to a football stadium with nose-bleed bleachers that seated fans directly above the Iowa River!

SUI Mascots – The Big Three. Over the last 175 years of University of Iowa history – there have been a handful of “official” mascots that have roamed the friendly confines of our campus. Come join us as we offer you a brief overview of what we call, The Big Three: Burch the Bear, Rex the ROTC Dog, and of course, Herky the Hawk.

Iowa Homecoming: Hawkeye-Style. Since 1912, Iowa City has served as the gracious host for an annual gathering of Hawkeye alums, students, faculty and staff – all united to celebrate everything SUI. There’s always a football game, of course, but Iowa Homecoming has so much more. Come down memory lane with us and celebrate over 100+ years of Iowa Homecoming.

Frank “Kinney” Holbrook – Tipton’s Iron Man. In 1895, the son of a runaway slave overcame many obstacles, fighting the good fight for racial equality, as he embarked on one amazing journey, becoming the first African American college football player in the state of Iowa. This Tipton, Iowa native attended SUI for two school years (1895-1897), leading the Hawkeyes to their first-ever conference championship while blazing a trail for others to follow.

Duke Slater – Iowa’s All-American Trailblazer. In 1921, Iowa had an All-American football player from Clinton that single-handedly took the Hawkeyes to a mythical national championship. A man cut from the same fabric as Nile Kinnick, Duke Slater has largely been forgotten over the last century, primarily because of his skin color. But no more. Beginning in 2021, the Hawkeyes will be playing on Duke Slater Field in Kinnick Stadium. Come read this amazing man’s story.

Ozzie Simmons + Racial Targeting = Floyd of Rosedale. In 1933, a young black man from Texas showed up in Iowa City, looking to follow in the footsteps of Duke Slater. Before he graduated in 1936, he had become an All-American football player, but more importantly, he blazed a trail for other people of color and is remembered each year with Floyd of Rosedale – going to the winner of the Iowa/Minnesota game.

Nile Kinnick – Iowa’s Heisman Winner. 1939 was a banner year for Iowa City. Under the leadership of Coach Eddie Anderson and the athleticism of one young man from Adel, Iowa, the Iron Men of Iowa shocked the college football world. As a result, that one young man won the Heisman trophy and went on to become a legendary figure in Iowa football – Nile Kinnick.

Our Hawkeye Sing-Along. At Homecoming 1962, The Daily Iowan published an article called “Sing Along with SUI’s Parade of Music”. Here four Hawkeye song classics and their stories were presented. Now, sixty years later, join us as we look once again at those memorable spirit-songs plus add another four to the list. From 1905 to 1985, the Hawkeyes have had some great (and not so great) chart-toppers. Clear your throat and come sing-along.

The Cy-Hawk Game – Iowa’s Super Bowl. In 1977, after a 43-year drought, The University of Iowa and Iowa State University renewed their football series. The two teams started playing each other in 1894, but stopped in 1934 due to high-levels of tension between the two schools. Those last two games (1933-1934) featured the very first Cy-Hawk Trophy – a Victory Bell that has a long, entertaining history in Iowa City. On Iowa! Go Hawks!

John Holladay – Hawkeye Artist at Heart. In 1975, a graphic arts school teacher from Davenport, Iowa sold a Nebraska Cornhusker sports cartoon at an Omaha art show. That began a successful career in cartooning for the Hawkeye artist, John Holladay, who went on to sell five million sports posters as he worked a day job as staff artist at The Quad Cities Times.

Remembering 1985 – Kinnick Stadium’s “Top-Five” Football Match-Up. In October of 1985, the #1 Hawkeyes lined up against the #2 Michigan Wolverines – a game for the ages. No true Hawkeye fan can ever forget the last 2 seconds of this thriller in Kinnick Stadium.


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