The Big Ten wrapped up its annual media days Tuesday, and one of the most talented players in the conference let everybody in on a little secret.
In a scheduling quirk, Wisconsin will play at Iowa for a second consecutive season. The Nov. 22 trip to Kinnick Stadium, as it turns out, doesn’t sit well with running back Melvin Gordon.
“I saw the schedule and I was like, ‘really, we have to go back?’” Gordon said according to HawkCentral.com. “I thought they would at least come here and get a little taste of Wisconsin.
“But I just have to be ready for it. I’ve been through it, so I know how to handle it this time. But I’ll probably bring some ear plugs with me this time or something.”
The reason for Gordon’s displeasure boils down to simple numbers. Or, more specifically, statistical numbers.
During a year that saw him rush for 1,609 yards, Gordon posted a season-low total of 62 yards in the Badgers’ 28-9 win over the Hawkeyes. It was the only game all season he was held under 4.5 yards per carry, and one of just three in which he was held under 5.7.
His longest run that day was 13 yards. Three of his carries netted him a total 35 yards; the other 14 saw him go for just 27, or under two yards per carry.
So, yeah, that afternoon is sticking in the Heisman hopeful’s craw.
“It was a rough game for me, man,” Gordon said. “I didn’t play as well as I wanted to. But the fans, man, it’s like everything I said in high school about Iowa, they had a paper right there and quoted everything from me.
“I had such a hard time with Iowa, I’m telling you. Their fans, they really got to me. I was just so upset. I was just so mad that the Iowa fans got in my head that game.”
Here’s guessing that, public consternation aside, 2013 Kinnick will serve as nothing but pure motivation for 2014 Gordon.