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New Kids On the Block: Meet Your Iowa Writers

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OTE has some fresh faces who will be "Hangin' Tough" to cover the Hawkeyes this season. Go ahead and say to yourself "I'll Be Loving you (Forever)". Go ahead. I can wait all night, girl.

Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

The first football Saturday is less than 24 hours away, and in the coming days and weeks some of Off Tackle Empire's more perceptive (read: sober) readers may notice a few new names writing articles.  Specifically, there are now three writers covering the Iowa Hawkeyes.  Who are these mysterious and devilishly good looking individuals that willingly cheer for the team with the Floyd sized chip on its shoulder?  Let's find out shall we?  Each of us was asked to introduce ourselves, as well answer a few totally-for-real questions from our (VERY professional) interviews with OTE.  Also this wouldn't be OTE if we didn't compare everyone to a vaguely similar part of pop culture, so...BOY BAND TROPES!

The Hunk: StewMonkey13

In addition to Iowa football, what other sports or teams do you follow?
Big Cubs fan (Praise Theo!).  I'm fully on board with Back to the Future II, right now.

What kind of beer is most like you?
Toppling Goliath Zeelander.  Bitter, dank, definitely not for everyone, but those who like it, love it.

What do you do when you aren't watching football?
What is this "watching football"?

What is your favorite moment from any Iowa game?
Tate to Holloway in the 2005 Cap One bowl against LSU.  I was there with some of my best friends.  We all had recently graduated college, but hadn't landed "real" jobs yet.  Iowa dominated the first half, then LSU made a furious comeback to take the lead and then Ferentz with some absolutely awful time management left Tate with no time on the clock and Holloway breaking free for his only catch as a Hawkeye.  It was awesome. Though, 2004 WI, 2008 PSU, 2008 WI, 2009 PSU, 2004 OSU, and 2010 MSU were all pretty great, too.


What is your typical game day routine?
I've had season tickets since the 2004 season.  For home games I get up around 5-5:30, pack up, get some donuts, pick up my wife some coffee. Then attempt to wake up my wife for about an hour, then get to tailgating as early as possible.  I always have several beer options, usually a flask of whiskey and gin.  For cold games I'll have a a thermos of rum and apple cider, and a thermos of hot chocolate and Bailey's.  For later games, I'll try and bring my smoker.  The MN game is gonna be so awesome this year.  FREE FLOYD!

Favorite X-Man:
Beast.  Cuz he's awesome.  A genius scientist with those skillz?  Hell yeah.

Favorite 90's tv show:
The Simpsons.  It is the best show in television history.

Favorite breakfast cereal mascot:
Count Chocula.  Vampires are badass (sit down Twilight, you don't count), and chocolate is awesome.

How many Taylor Swift songs are on your iPod?
0, but that's because I don't think I have any songs on my phone.  I did have the "Shake it Off" video bookmarked for a long time because my wife indoctrinated my oldest daughter.  But she's moved past that.  She loves the "Too Many Cooks" song.

Favorite Baldwin:
Adam Baldwin: Chuck, Firefly, Independence Day.

What is the most essential tailgating food or drink?
Food:  pig products (brats, ribs, bacon wrapped food stuffs)
Drink:  A strong, good, yet drinkable beer.  Something that you can play Flippy Cup, Boom, and Beer Pong with.  But also feel comfortable just drinking.  I like Dale's Pale Ale for my base tailgating beer, and then add in others around it.  Also, a LOT of water.

What is the best watering hole in Iowa City?
Overall, probably the Vine, because it has the best wings, and the Vine Stein is a pretty good beer for cheap.  But Stella, Blackstone, Short's, and Red's Alehouse are all excellent places with fantastic tap lists.

What is your go-to karaoke jam?
Ice, Ice, Baby - Vanilla Ice

What would you play instead of "Enter Sandman" as Iowa comes out of the tunnel?
I'm really bad with current music. I basically haven't paid attention to music since the early '00s.  So, I'm going to go against the grain and go with the Hokey Pokey.  Bring it back.

What is your spirit animal?
/points to username

What is your reaction to the movie Rudy?
I'm going to plead the fifth here.

Have you ever tried to grow facial hair?
Currently sporting a beard, and have for a while, though I tend to just shave it off on a whim.  Once in college I went about 8 months without shaving or trimming my beard at all.  It was a pretty glorious wild beard.

Shy One
The Cute Shy One: alnamiasIV (aka David Fidler)

" I am an oddity in the world of Iowa Hawkeye fandom. I was not born into fandom—I am from New Jersey, and with all due respect to Rutgers, in the Garden State, college football is taken about as seriously as a butter cow. I also didn't attend the University of Iowa. Neither did anybody in my family. I am a fan because I met and shacked up with an Iowan Girl (thank you Primus, we salute you), and she introduced me to the pomp and pageantry of college football. As it happened, this was in 2001, so I came along right when Iowa was about to hit a high. I immediately respected what Kirk Ferentz brought to the table. He coached efficient, no-nonsense, hard-nosed football. It is now 15 years later, I'm still with the same girl, but Iowa football has become difficult to stand by. In the end, sports are entertainment, and Iowa football c. 2015 is boring with a capital BORE. But I persist; I was hooked and now I can't give it up. Like all Iowa fans, I am left hoping Ferentz has one more run in him. I admit I don't think he does."

What do you do when you aren't watching football?
I'm teaching 14-18 year-old Wisconsin youth how to write.

What is your typical gameday routine?
My routine consists of waking up at about 5 AM, going for a bike ride, eating breakfast, running errands, getting back home and getting as much work done as possible before the game starts.

What is your favorite moment from any Iowa game?
My favorite moment was "7 gets 6" when McNutt scored a last second touchdown against Michigan State. I, who makes Kirk Ferentz look demonstrative, actually high-fived multiple bar patrons.

Favorite Baldwin:
Alec, because the rest of them are talentless hacks who have no business being famous, although I like Stephen because he's so dumb he's almost entertaining.

What would you play instead of "Enter Sandman" as Iowa comes out of the tunnel?
I am all for changing the tunnel music, but I don't know what it should be changed to; I just know it should be something that appeals to people younger than me. In fact, it would be great if Iowa as an institution would pull it's head out of its ass and appeal to people younger than me. Hopefully they consider my input when the hire the next president.

bad boy
The Bad Boy: Creighton McEleney

"I was born and raised in Iowa City. After high school I played two years of D-III football before moving back home. Living in Iowa City is awesome because you get a lot of exposure to the program. I've served the football team meals during fall camp, slowed down on Burlington St to make room for their mopeds to change lanes, been ignored by bartenders more interested in serving them, and once I had Chris Doyle witness my 40 yd dash which he justifiably called "pathetic".  It may not sound like much, but growing up I felt like a 14 year old girl in 1990 with backstage passes to New Kids On the Block (hey, topical!). I'm currently a student living in Virginia, and even though I can't attend every home game anymore, at least I get to sleep in an extra hour on Saturday.

In addition to Iowa football, what other sports or teams do you follow?
The Chicago Blackhawks, The Chicago Bears, and West Ham in the EPL. I also come from a family full of Notre Dame graduates, making me one of like, 8 Iowa fans in the world that don't hate the Fighting Irish.

What is your typical gameday routine:
When I get to go to games at Kinnick, I do the usual tailgating stuff. Loud music, pork products and good beer.  IPAs in the first few weeks, but darker and darker brews as the weather gets colder.  At home I usually wake up and make a big breakfast so I don't have to get up during the game (chicken and waffles is one of the few things the south got right). Once the game kicks off, I throw on the same exact jersey, pants and shoes, as per my superstition, and don't get up until after the game. Ok I take bathroom breaks, but that's it.

What is the best watering hole in Iowa City?
For watching games, nothing beats The Vine. A dozen maple hot wings and a Vine Stein always hits the spot. For leisure, Dublin Underground. It's low key, and they have cool bartenders, cool customers and good music. If you're really lucky, sometimes you get to watch Twin Peaks or The Twilight Zone on a slow night.

What beer is most like you?
Peace Tree Brewing's Blonde Fatale. Complex, yet delicate. Blindingly pale, but sporting a pleasant aroma. Light and easy enough to spend the whole party with, but doing so tends to cause blackouts and regret.

Favorite moment from any Iowa game:
Daniel Murray kicking Penn State out of the BCS Championship game and doing the soccer slide in 2008. No wait, Adrian Clayborn blocking a punt, picking up the ball and rumbling into the endzone to take the lead in the fourth quarter against Penn State in 2009. Actually, Ferentz's general habit of trolling of Joe Paterno at every chance was pretty great.

Favorite X-Man:
Anyone who played the arcade game in the 90's knows the correct answer is Colossus

Favorite breakfast cereal mascot:
The Cookie Crisp burglars.  Sadly, I'm too young to remember the wizard.

Favorite Baldwin:
Stephen is the black sheep of the family, so I'm going to throw some love his way. I mean, did you guys even see The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas?!?

How many Taylor Swift songs are on your iPod?
None, but I have every Abba album so it's kind of a wash.

Make sure you check OTE every day for new articles about the Hawkeyes from Creighton, Stew and David, including "Step by Step" breakdowns of the games. And follow Creighton on Twitter @CP_McEleney. Didn't I (Blow Your Mind)?