In August, Daily sports editor Scott Bell sat down with a member of each of Michigan’s home conference opponents. This week, we’ll look at Iowa quarterback Drew Tate. Tate is a decorated and intense signal-caller, now leading the Hawkeyes in his final season in Iowa City.
Scott Bell: You’re not the biggest guy, and you’ve taken your fair share of hits. What is it that you have that enables you to take those hits and keep on playing?
Drew Tate: I don’t know, it’s kind of a combination of everything I guess. It’s not really toughness, maybe to some people, but that’s just the way the game goes. You’re going to get hit, there’s going to be times you can’t get up, I understand that. I got a concussion and I got up, I don’t really remember much. There was one time I couldn’t get up when I was dehydrated – I couldn’t move. But the hits don’t really bother me.
SB: What was it about Iowa that lured you away from Texas and into Iowa City?
DT: I don’t really know much about Iowa pre-’03, to tell you the truth. It was funny because I was coming up to Iowa, and some guy asked me how big of a city Iowa was. I was like “Oh man.” Then I said “They have running water and electricity, so we’re all right.”
SB: Iowa’s fans have a reputation for being some of the best and most loyal ones in the country. What is it about them that makes them so special?
DT: It’s passion. They have a passion for Iowa football. They love it, they love (Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz). Our team is a reflection of him. I think he . could have taken a lot of things that were said about him, and could have said “I told you so” after the ’02 year. But he didn’t say anything. He just bit his lip and stayed very humble, and now it’s paid off. He could lose the next six seasons in a row, but he wouldn’t be leaving. He won’t have six losing seasons, though, there’s no way. . I think they’re going to support us. I’ve never heard a boo before. Ever. I don’t think they’d ever do it, either.
SB: What Big Ten stadium is the toughest to play in?
DT: There’s a common denominator. They’re all kind of are the same. I wouldn’t say one is worse than the other. Wisconsin was pretty bad, they have a lot of students who say pretty bad things, so I guess probably Wisconsin.
SB: You got a hole-in-one last summer. Do you remember a lot of the details from it?
DT: It was like 188 (yards). I used a six iron. It landed and just spun back in. It spun like back and to the left. . Don’t ask me how it did that. I was supposed to win a car; they said “Hey, if you get a hole-in-one, you win this car.” So I said, “Hey, where’s my car?” And I didn’t get it.
SB: Why didn’t you get it? Because of amateur rules?
DT: I have no idea why I didn’t get this. But I said, if it wasn’t for the University of Iowa and football, I wouldn’t have been there to get the opportunity in the first place, so it’s not the biggest tragedy ever. I still had fun, it was a good experience. I mean, getting a hole-in-one whether you get a car or not is still unbelievable. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
SB: Did you buy drinks for the guys in the clubhouse?
DT: I didn’t get my car, so I didn’t buy people drinks.
SB: Did Iowa’s golf coach try and get a hold of you after he heard the news?
DT: No, I’m not that good.