The water tower adjacent to Kinnick Stadium is iconic. It is conspicuously viewable from in and around the stadium and most college football fans know it from seeing it on TV, in the background in video games, and in countless Kinnick photos. Though the topic is a favorite amoung Hawkeye fans, little often comes of the painting discussions. Last year, one fan sent a letter to University President Sally Mason requesting the tower be painted with a large Tigerhawk. Mason apparently had better things to do and nothing came of his attempts…that is until now. On Monday, Iowa's Athletic Direction Gary Barta announced that he was in favor of painting the water tower adjacent to Kinnick Stadium with a Hawkeye logo. He also said, "If a petition gets signed, I may join the fans."
Well, it didn't take long for fans to catch wind of Barta's painting endorsement and there is now an online petition. The petition already has about 1,000 e-signatures and the number keeps growing as many fans are putting links up on FaceBook, sending emails to friends and family, and sharing it on mulitple threads on the Hawkeye messages boards. Browsing through some of the signatures, most look legitimate and most are in favor of a Tigerhawk being painted upon the water tower in some combination of black and gold. There are however, a few e-sigs out there that are suspicious. They are doing a pretty good job of removing the obvious jokes (and I saved a few!), but there are still some out there if you go digging for them. Here's a few of the more interesting ones:
806. Stanley Hawk - Suggested Design: a nice picture of Jake Christensen (was deleted)
725. Steve Alford - Suggested Design: Steve Alford's Face (also deleted)
928. Bill Heineman - Suggested Design: Tiger Hawk, in flight, chewing on a badger, with a cyclone in one claw and a nittany lion in the other and a pile of mascot bones and remains of all the rest of the teams we destroy on the ground. As well as a monster sized GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!
379. Brett Bielema - Suggested Design: IOWA with Nike swoosh underneath (missed opportunity there with a Tigerhawk tattoo joke)
271. Jeff Stickel - Suggested Design: Iowa State Logo (boo Jeff Stickel!)
The overwhelming favorite choice for the design to be painted on the water tower is of a Tigerhawk, either gold with a black ground as pictured above, or the opposite black with a gold background. I like the idea of the Tigerhawk, but I'm not sure how well it would fit on the water tower. If you take a look at the water tower you can see that the support legs come about halfway up the tank. The cuts significantly into the space you can have a painting (and have it look good). If you want to place a picture so it is directly facing the inside of Kinnick, one of the post is right in the middle of where the pictures would go. You can see it in the picture above, the Tigerhawk goes right over that post. For that reason, I am in favor of the block "I" that you see on so many baseball caps. Take a look at the Idaho water tower to see what I'm talking about. In addition to the Tigerhawk and the block "I", there are some other creative design ideas floating around. Check out the photoshop posted in this thread. Hawk Central also has a good paint the water tower thread going with pictures of other university water tower and even has a link to a water tower painting company.
I'm very interested to watch this story grow. There would definitely be some potential for a petition to get a lot of signatures (like 70,585) at a home football game and I think that would be hard to ignore. Especially if someone can find some financial backing for this project. Anyway, I'm doing my part by adding my name to the petition and adding a link to it on this blog.