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Q&A: Tim Dwight reflects on 2011 squad, broken records

BY SAM LOUWAGIE | SEPTEMBER 06, 2011 7:20 AM

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DI: What does this honor mean to you?

Dwight: You know, you look at all the players [in the Hall of Fame] — just incredible athletes. And you’re supposed to be in this incredible group. It’s kind of humbling. It reflects on all the players I played with.
Playing in [Kinnick] Stadium, in front of all the fans, being from Iowa City, it means a lot.

DI: What did you learn in your Iowa career that helped you in the NFL and later on in life?

Dwight: [Being] grounded. You always fell back on your fundamentals, your hard work. Being on time, paying attention, being coachable. Being a little courageous at times. Being nasty at times, but also being a good teammate. It just comes natural to you to attack a goal, do everything you can do to accomplish it.

DI: What are some of your fondest memories in a Hawkeye uniform?

Dwight: Oh, man. My big punt return against Penn State, and against Ohio State. My first touchdown against Central Michigan. Getting blown out by Oregon up there. Scoring against Minnesota at the end. A lot of good memories. Playing in the snow against Northwestern, getting snowballs thrown at us. It’s fun.

DI: You were honored today not only for football but for being a Big Ten champion sprinter [Dwight won the 1999 conference title in the 100-meter dash]. Two-sport Division-I athletes aren’t all that common.

Dwight: It’s not too common, but there are some. I ran track in high school, and I was pretty fast. I wanted to run track in college. I wanted to run and compete with them.

The Big Ten 100 [meter dash] was kind of funny, because that was only like my fourth 100-meter of the year. Pulled my hamstring earlier in the year, I didn’t run until early May. The Big Ten championship was late May. It was 55 degrees and raining, like it was [on Sept. 3].

The day before, I was like fifth in the race. My time was 10.4, all these other guys were running 10.2s. I’m like, I’m in the finals, so I might maybe try to get fifth or sixth.

I woke up the next morning, and it was 55 and raining, and I was like, “I’m going to win this race.” Because I knew all the track guys hate cold weather. I was like, “I’m a football player today.”

DI: There are a lot of new faces on the football team this year. What are your thoughts after watching the first game?

Dwight: Anytime you have a young team, you go out there and compete. You got to see what these kids are made of, and if they can take the coaching and grow. That’s the way I’m going to look at this year. It’s exciting. Anytime you get new guys in there, you see them develop. And here at Iowa, we have that roller-coaster ride, because we can’t get consistently all the best recruits. But we’re competitive as hell. Sometimes, you’re not going to be as competitive as you’d like to be, but I think this team’s going to be solid all year, and it’s going to get better.

DI: Marvin McNutt is three touchdown catches away from tying your career Hawkeye record. [Both Dwight and Danan Hughes had 21 touchdown receptions]. What are your thoughts on that?

Dwight: I know. Good for him. Last year’s [receptions] record got broken by D.J. [Derrell Johnson-Koulianos], and now my touchdown record is going to get broken. I’m glad these guys are hitting these milestones. That’s what you set them for.

Marvin is a great talent. He has turned himself into a hell of a receiver, and I’m looking forward to him breaking that. It wasn’t that much anyway — what is it, 21? I hope he extends it out quite a bit.


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