Big Lead Sports Bar

1/05/2010

THE IOWA-STEELERS CONNECTION



Your eyes aren't deceiving you: the Steelers did not accept an invitation to the Orange Bowl against Georgia Tech on Tuesday night. But seeing a quarterback with the number 12 and running backs #32 and 36 sure do play mind games with you in those uniforms. I wonder if they have a #14 with a penchant for dropping passes?

Anyway, I had always heard there was some connection between the university and the Steelers concerning the similarly-colored uniforms, so with that on my mind, I went a-googling. And it did not take long to find an answer. Wikipedia says....

"In 1979, Hayden Fry helped to create the Tigerhawk, the logo seen on Iowa's football helmets. Since both teams shared the colors of black and gold, Fry gained permission from the Pittsburgh Steelers, the dominant NFL program of the 1970s, to overhaul Iowa’s uniforms in the Steelers’ image. Fry's idea was that if the team were going to act like winners, they first needed to dress like winners. Fry had originally asked Steelers Defensive Tackle "Mean" Joe Greene for a replica helmet and home jersey; Greene was able to send Fry to one of the team owners, and three days later, the owners sent Fry reproduction copies of the home and away uniform of Steeler Quarterback Terry Bradshaw, making Iowa one of only a few schools to use the uniform scheme of an NFL team."

So there you have it; Joe Greene re-routed Hayden Fry to the Rooneys, and the rest is Big Tenleven history. As long as they don't rip off the Terrible Towel, everything will remain cool with Steeler Nation.

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6 comments:

Brando said...

I think the weirdest moment with Iowa was watching the game they played with Pitt last year (or maybe two years ago) at Heinz Field. A team was dressed like the Steelers, but was in road uniforms. Also, fans were in the stands wearing uniforms that looked like the Steelers uniforms, but they were not in that majority.

It is positively weird to see people dressed up in Steelers uniforms at Heinz Field rooting for the away team.

Brainwise said...

They may dress like the Steelers, and their win was "good" for the Big 10 Conference, but I still hate Iowa.

D said...

Brainwise must be a Penn State fan.

Nice to see a little Hawkeye love on MH. I grew up in Iowa during during the late 70's and 80's, and caught the end of the Steelers dominance and the beginning of Fry's Iowa coaching career. Consequently I have been a lifelong fan of both teams, and am an Iowa alum to boot. Both Iowa and Pittsburgh have a lot of talent coming back next year, so I am pulling for a championship for both squads, however unlikely that may be.

Now that I live in MN, the fact that both my teams dominated their gopher state opponents this year makes my day-to-day existence that much easier, particularly now that the NFL playoffs are starting. Man, I am sick of Favre.

Adam said...

Most Penn Staters don't hate Iowa, they hate losing to the. They're a good bunch though.

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