I love my alma mater. I think that's fairly well known around these parts by now. I will forever bleed black and gold just like any other red blooded Iowan (and Chicago Suburbanite) that elected to spend their collegiate years at that beauty of a campus. I will forever listen to AC/DC's Back in Black every time I step foot in my car on a football Saturday and park my butt in front of the TV right before tip-off during the winter.
And I will assuredly continue to proudly rock obnoxious yellow coats and t-shirts, even when the humidity around Orlando is hovering around 100%.
So if you don't like the rumblings of an overly optimistic and hyped -- yet humbled -- Iowa fan, then I recommend you gallivant to any one of our other wonderful writers work and give them a chance to steal your heart. Because from this point on, I would like to (humbly) welcome you all to the Golden Herky Award Additions column!
Now, some of you might be asking, "What in tarnation is a Golden Herky Award?" and let me just say... words do it little justice. You have to see it to believe it:
If that wasn't enough to rope you in, here's the description from The Englert Theatre Event's page:
The inaugural Golden Herky Awards Show is a celebratory event for all student athletes, coaches, and athletics staff. Awards include Male and Female Athlete of the Year, Outstanding Post Season Performance, Best Upset, Male and Female Most Outstanding Team, Record Breaking Performance, Male and Female Hawkeye of the Year, and many more!
Basically, it's The Dundies without the Chili's queso to snack on:
Now, before we start presenting our additional awards, it would be helpful to know that Iowa basketball won three Golden Herkys on the night, including the Medal of Honor Award for Mike Gesell's work as a Hawkeye:
And Nicolas Baer won for Outstanding Newcomer. I'm personally so glad that this happened. As someone that flew out to Brooklyn to watch Villanova annihilate the Hawkeyes in person, Baer was the only member -- both newcomer and veteran -- that showed up to that contest. It was a nice look (hopefully) in that young man's future:
And the basketball team as a whole won Best Upset with their home win over #1 Michigan State.
Now, for the additional awards you all didn't know you've been waiting for:
Best In Game Display of Your Sam Cassell's: Peter Jok against Florida State
With the rest of his teammates doing everything but literally peeing down their leg, Peter Jok had one of his best collective games of the season against Florida State -- scoring 24 total points, but none bigger than that back breaking three in overtime -- in what turned out to be the defining win of the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Sure, Jok was only 2-8 from three before he found that slight opening along the baseline, but when you have a short term memory and a quick release like he has, you gotta let it fly when you have that much room to breath.
Outside of Jarrod Uthoff certifying himself as a Player of the Year candidate, Jok too, was proving early on that he could -- and would -- handle a bigger role for this team. And this shot was just the beginning of a tremendous season for what once was an under performing scoring guard.
Now, instead of talking about him with our fingers and toes crossed -- wishing he'd become an elite wing in this league -- we can now write his name down in ink as this coming years linchpin.
Best "No, no, no, no, YES!" Moment of the Year: Adam Woodbury's tip/shove against Temple
I still don't have the words for this. I was in World of Beer, surrounded by Philadelphia residents who were down for some retreat (why they had to be in the bar I was watching in, only God knows) and was literally quaking in my boots. QUAKING.
How did this happen? Not again? This slide has to stop! WHY AM I ON THIS ROLLER COASTER OF SORROW?
And then PANDEMONIUM. You most certainly didn't want to be around me at that particular point in time. It wasn't one of my best moments as a human being of this earth and if for some weird chance that those lovely Philadelphia residents read this piece, I'm sorry for throwing a piece of pretzel in the air that just so happened to be in your general direction. I promise I didn't fully mean for it to land on your table.
Best Aaron Rodgers "R-E-L-A-X" moment: Fran McCaffery after Iowa's exhibition loss to Augusta
Remember that game? Boy were we a bunch of Chicken Little's, right? Granted, some were more than other's (yeah, I saw you on Twitter), but all of us would be lying if we said that we took nothing negatively out of that game. Or didn't panic, even if it was in our own heads for just a second.
That is, unless of course your name if Fran McCaffery, in which case, you just wanted every one to R-E-L-A-X. You knew what you were doing all along:
There's two ways to look at this game... You can schedule it or not, OK? We could have found a team that won eight games last year very easily. We scheduled a team that won 31 games. Most teams won't play them, OK? But I felt like we needed a game like this right here. When you look at our schedule, we play next Friday and Sunday. We got Marquette, Iowa State. You look at who we have, Florida State. The tournament in Orlando. We better play somebody good who is going to expose some of our weaknesses as opposed to you win by 25 and you don't really know where your weaknesses are yet.
Clairvoyant McCaffery is my favorite McCaffery.
Best "Heat Check" Bucket: Jarrod Uthoff against Minnesota
Yeah... I'm really, really going to miss him.
Well, there you have it folks. I want to thank all of you for coming out today; you all looked so extravagant and lovely. Congratulations once again to all of our Golden Herky award winners. We hope your after parties are equally as enjoyable as Leonardo DiCaprio's was.
Until next year, Go Hawks.