Ah, football. What is it about this sport? It’s more than the hot chocolate warming our hands through our mittens, the bass drum catching hold of the chilly air, or the outsized energy of the players. For me, after all the touchdowns are tallied and all the drinks are drained, the greatest thing about this sport will always be you, dear fans.
Just look at you out there waving your colors in the wide open air! Walking through the parking lots surrounding Kinnick on game day, who can tell rich from poor, failing-out-Freshman-year from Rhodes scholar? Who can deny the perfection of the bearded Hawkeye Jesus in his striped overalls going long across an acre of concrete?
As the ball morphs to orange and round, and indoor Hawk fans take center stage, I offer this pictorial salute to the foul-weather fans, those who brave the wind, the rain and the sleety-snowish ice, be-decked and bedazzled, brat-full and whiskey-warmed. Those heroes who carry their flamingos and logs (?) to the altar of Kinnick, putting their comfort on the line each and every Saturday for our Hawkeyes.
Last November, the LV team scoured the streets and tailgates looking for style standouts in a crush of hooded sweatshirts, jeans and sneakers. We wanted to recognize the fans that got personal with their Hawk looks, tying their threds together with expert precision.
From hand-crocheted Mohawk hats to glitzy Pocahontas headbands, retro track suits and satin embroidered jackets, every individual in the vibrant spectrum streaming into Kinnick each Saturday is spinning the same simple, wonderful theme: We are black and gold. We are number one. We are Hawkeyes. (We love beer.)
I may not be a fashion expert, but damn Hawks—you so fly! As my post-holiday gift to all the fans who’ve stuck with the Hawks (and with Townie Hawk) through this crazy 2011 season, here is the ultimate in Hawk Couture.
Photos by Jay Geisen