Big Ten Champs Postgame: Solomon, Greenway

From the depths of what some fans viewed as despair, Iowa won seven consecutive games to earn a share of the Big Ten title. The Hawkeyes completed their conference run with a dominating 30-7 victory against Wisconsin Saturday. Two of the teams standouts, WR Clinton Solomon and LB Chad Greenway, discuss Saturday's win and what it took for the overcome odds and obstacles to be champions in this HN.com premium Q&A Package.

CLINTON SOLOMON

Where are you going next?

I'm going to Disney World.

Did you think that was possible after the Michigan game?

When we came back and lost to Michigan, I felt like this team, we were kind of down and out. But Coach Ferentz always talked to us about sticking together and working through it.

I feel like our fans doubted us after those two losses. But like Coach Ferentz said, people don't know what goes on inside that locker room. We stuck together. We knew we could do it. We just fought through the ups and downs.

When did you know you guys could do it?

I never lost (confidence). After the Arizona State game, yeah, it was ugly. After the Michigan game we didn't do too well. But I never lost (confidence) in this team. And Coach Ferentz never lost (confidence). We just kept fighting.

Can you takes us through that 51-yard touchdown at the end of the first half?

It was a two-minute offense. I was lined up to the left. Usually I'm on the ball, but I was off of the ball this time. Normally I run a crossing route with the tight end. But I honestly didn't know what route to run to be honest with you.

I seen the safety one on one with me, so I figured I got to try to beat him. I looked back at the last minute and me and Drew made eye contact and he let go of the ball.

It looked like you got the safety turned around.

I gave him an inside move. He moved inside and I got over top of him. Drew just put the ball out in front of me to the right and I had to run and go get it.

What kind of momentum did that give you guys going into halftime?

That was big. We needed that going in. That was big for momentum because our defense came out right out he gate and got us those turnovers.

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CHAD GREENWAY

Did you think "We are the Champions" is the soundtrack of this team?

(Laughs) You know, we had some high hopes coming into the season. I don't think we ever stopped believing in those. That's why we're here.

It's a credit to our entire team. We had some issues at running back and O-line and other positions. We just had guys come in and do the job. We found a way to win.

There's not a better coaching staff in the country. There's not a better team in the country, right now, playing as one.

Chad, two Big Ten Titles in three years. That almost seems unreal doesn't it?

This is almost a surreal feeling coming from that 2-2 start. We're 2-2, down and out, and the fans are wondering if we're going to go to a bowl game this year. We stuck together. We kept getting better. We grew up. This is an unbelievable feeling.

Did you get lost in the crowd out there at all?

There were so many people out there. It was hot. You can't breath. But I wouldn't have it any other way. You know which way the locker room is, you just try to push your way through.

When did you find out that you guys had a shot at the title?

It was posted before the game. I just happened to look up at the Jumbotron right when they flashed the score. I didn't want to say anything. So, I just thought to myself, we have a chance here.

Wisconsin came up with a couple of big picks and you guys answered. How key was that?

Say they get 10 points out of those drives or even three or seven, you're looking at a different ball game. You're looking them having the momentum early instead of us. Those stops give our team momentum. If they have the lead on us, we're playing a different style of football. We kind of dictated the game once we got points on the board first. That had to be be a lose of momentum for them coming in here. When you don't get point like that, it's going to be deflating for your team.

Were the interceptions a result of the D-line?

I think so. Stocco's a great quarterback. But no quarterback is as good, maybe besides Tate, when they're running and throwing the ball. He's not as effective throwing when he's running, and that's what we wanted to do. The D-line got such great pressure on him all day. They flushed him out and he made some bad decisions.

You get to complete the Florida tour now.

(Laughs) Yeah, this is the completion. It's just amazing. It's just an amazing feeling to be part of a group of guys that have worked so well together and really come together as one. It's a great feeling.

It's easy to say that we have to rally the troups and all of that. In actuality, is it hard to do that especially coming off of those two losses?

Yeah, but in that case, you just have to go back to what got you where you are right now. Everybody is on this team because they were a great football player at one point in high school or now. We train together for so long; year round we're training and lifting and running. It just brings everybody together. You may have fans saying you're not going to do this and you can't do this, but if you as a group know that you can still do it and with all of those workouts you've been through, it's going to pull you through eventually.


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