IOWA CITY, Ia. – Iowa safety John Lowdermilk was born a Buckeye.
His dad, Kirk, was an all-Big Ten center at Ohio State who went on to a 12-year NFL career. Kirk also has season tickets to Ohio State football, and John tagged along for several games each year.
John was at Ohio Stadium on Nov. 14, 2009, when Ohio State edged Iowa for the Big Ten title with a 27-24 overtime victory. In fact, John stormed the field with other excited Buckeye fans to celebrate.
“It was a good game, a good environment, and the Hawkeyes should have pulled it out,” Lowdermilk said. “That’s all I remember.”
Lowermilk returns to the field at Ohio Stadium on Saturday for the first time since celebrating a Buckeye victory in 2009. Obviously, he hopes for a different outcome.
“It’s a little weird,” said Lowdermilk, a junior from Kensington, Ohio, who has started every game for the Hawkeyes at strong safety this season. “Funny how things work out. I’m happy with the way things have turned out. I’m happy to be playing for Coach (Kirk) Ferentz and the staff he has here.”
Lowdermilk never had a chance to be a legacy Buckeye – Ohio State never offered him a scholarship. Iowa did.
Ferentz said he’s not worried about Lowdermilk getting too keyed up for Saturday’s game.
“He’ll be fine,” Ferentz said. “He’s doing a good job for us. He ought to be mad at them, they didn’t offer him a scholarship. So maybe that works to our advantage.”
This will be the first time Iowa has played Ohio State since Lowermilk has been on the Hawkeye roster. He said his father doesn’t have mixed emotions.
“Dad has always said that blood is thicker than water,” John said. “You cheer for family.”
John had plenty of Ohio State gear … until he became a Hawkeye.
“I gave most of it away,” Lowdermilk said. “To friends, Goodwill … I don’t have any Ohio State gear now.”
Category: Iowa Hawkeyes Football