Battle for State Supremacy

posted 9/8/2015 in General

While it may not get as much media attention as Michigan vs. Ohio State or Oklahoma vs. Texas, the battle for the Cy-Hawk Trophy is one of the fiercest in all of college football. Every year the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Iowa State Cyclones square off to establish bragging rights for the next year. Houses are divided between the black and gold of Iowa and the cardinal and gold of ISU. With the two teams meeting annually since 1977, there’s plenty of history between them. From 3 OT thrillers to long winning streaks to blowouts and upsets, we take a look at five of the craziest moments in the series.

  1. The 3 OT Thriller of 2011

Tied at 10 apiece after the 1st half, the Hawkeyes took a 24-17 lead late in the 4th quarter before the Steele Jantz-led Cyclones came back to tie the game with just over a minute to go. The two then traded touchdowns for the first two overtimes before the Hawkeyes were held to a field goal in the third overtime. The Cyclones then secured a win with a four yard touchdown run from James White to put an end to the longest game in series history with ISU prevailing in a 44-41 triple overtime victory over the Hawkeyes.

  1. The Streak
The streak started in 1983 when the #10 ranked Iowa dominated Iowa State 51-10 in Ames. That game would mark a period of domination for the Hawkeyes over the Cyclones for the next 14 years as Iowa racked up a 15 game win streak that ended in 1998. The streak is the longest in series history and more than doubled the previous record of six by the Hawkeyes from 1916-1933.
  1. The Lone Loss
In 2002 the Hawkeyes were hungry for a victory over the Cyclones after having lost to them the past 4 years. Iowa came out firing on all cylinders and quickly grabbed a 17 point lead at halftime. But Seneca Wallace and Iowa State came back to score 29 straight points to escape Iowa City with a win and hand Iowa it’s only loss of the regular season.
  1. The Trophy Carousel
The Cy-Hawk trophy was first presented to the winner of the rivalry game in 1977 by Iowa Governor Robert D. Ray. The trophy, which featured a running back displaying the stiff-arm pose, a football, and the likenesses of Cy the Cardinal and Herky the Hawk, was exchanged back and forth many times from that time through the 2010 season. In 2011, a new trophy was introduced which featured a farm family gathered around a basket of corn. After the design was widely ridiculed by everyone from former Iowa coach Hayden Fry to Governor Terry Branstad for not being enough football focused, a new temporary trophy was created for the 2011 season. The current trophy was introduced the following year which brought back the two mascots and features the scores of past games engraved on the sides.
  1. The Break           
Iowa and Iowa State first met on the gridiron in 1894 with Iowa State coming away victorious over the Hawks, 16-8. The two schools then met another 23 times from 1895-1934 with Iowa building a 16-8 series lead. However, due to the animosity and bad blood between the two schools, the rivalry was put on a 43 year hiatus. In the 1970s state legislators became involved and worked to get the series reinstated, and finally in 1977 the two teams met again in Iowa City. Both teams were running high on emotions, which only intensified when the Cyclones came out of the locker room with jerseys that read BEAT IOWA. The Cyclones fell to the Hawkeyes though, and fans of Iowa stormed the field. The rivalry was back.

The rivalry has produced many other great moments throughout the years, and will continue to do so as the two schools recently approved an agreement to keep meeting every year through 2021. With such close calls and crazy moments of triumph, the Hawkeyes and Cyclones have developed a level of respect for each other, but houses will continue to be divided as the battle for state supremacy rages on!

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