This week marks 100 years of Homecoming at the University of Iowa. Back on November 23rd, 1912 the inaugural homecoming game was played against the University of Wisconsin. Iowa lost that first game, but is 54-39-5 since then in homecoming contests. Now 100 years later, Iowa gets to face their bitter-rival to the north, the undefeated Minnesota Golden Gophers, for the Floyd of Rosedale trophy on the Centennial Edition of Homecoming.
Homecoming at Iowa is a week-long celebration. Earlier this week, the Hawkeyes hosted the United Way 5k, a Picnic at the UI apartments, a movie night showing The Avengers, a blood drive, an alumni dinner, recyclable boat races, Ruckus at the Rec and casino night. There was Sports Night at the Hawkeye Hall of Fame and basketball and volleyball games on Wednesday and the Iowa Shout on Thursday,a large event where Iowa students demonstrated their school spirit by performing to the homecoming theme, which is Keeping the Tradition: Centennial Edition. On Friday, the parade goes through downtown Iowa City, followed by a concert featuring Matt and Kim, and the Grand Funk Railroad. The week culminates on game day with Iowa’s Big Ten opener against the Golden Gophers.The University of Minnesota hasn’t been to a bowl game since 2009, but has bested Iowa the last two seasons to take home the beautiful pig trophy. This year, the Golden Gophers are well on their way to reaching a bowl game, starting the season 4-0, including victories over Syracuse, Western Michigan and UNLV.
They’ll face an Iowa squad that has lost two games by a total of four points including last weeks game that the Hawks lost to Central Michigan 32-31. Iowa had erased a halftime deficit of 23-14 and led 31-23 with just over two minutes left in the game, but the Chippewa drove down the field and scored, and then recovered an onside kick. With three seconds left on the clock CMU drilled a 47-yard field goal to seal the victory.
One bright spot for the Hawkeyes has been the play of running back Mark Weisman. In the UNI game, his first significant action, Weisman had a break-out game, prompting fans to cheer on “Weisman for Heisman.” This past Weekend Weisman actually one-upped himself with 217 yards on 27 carries and three more touchdowns. He is now the fifth-leading rusher in the Big Ten, even after seeing very limited action the first two weeks of the season.The Hawkeye will be looking to Weisman to continue his Heisman campaign and start the next century of homecoming with a victory over Minnesota.