What Is the Story Behind Floyd of Rosedale?

    The story behind the Floyd of Rosedale is as interesting as the Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Iowa Hawkeyes game it commemorates every year.

    If you’re from the state of Iowa or Minnesota and you like college football, chances are you know what we mean when we say Floyd of Rosedale. The coveted trophy between the Iowa Hawkeyes and Minnesota Golden Gophers represents who’s superior in this rivalry, but how did it all start?

    What Is the Story Behind Floyd of Rosedale?

    How Old Is the Floyd of Rosedale Trophy?

    While the Iowa Hawkeyes and Minnesota Golden Gophers have been playing against each other since 1891, the Floyd of Rosedale Trophy hasn’t always been given to the winner. In fact, the two teams played 28 times before the trophy was even created.

    In what was a lighthearted wager to avoid more serious conflict, Minnesota governor Floyd Olson proposed that the 1935 contest include a prize hog. The two teams have played for the trophy ever since.

    How Much Does the Floyd of Rosedale Trophy Weigh?

    Since it’s tough to continuously bet a live pig (and transport it) on a yearly basis, Minnesota decided a trophy was needed. He had a sculptor create a bronze replica of the pig, and it turned into the trophy we know today.

    Floyd isn’t light by any means. For a college football player, it might seem easy to pick up the trophy, but the numbers tell us it will take some work. Floyd comes in at 98 pounds (44kg). He’s also 21 inches long and 15 inches high.

    Why Are Minnesota and Iowa Playing for a Pig Trophy?

    In the 1934 contest between the Iowa Hawkeyes and Minnesota Golden Gophers, complaints about Minnesota’s treatment of Iowa star halfback Ozzie Simmons headlined the Gophers’ 48-12 win.

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    It was expected to be a rough game, and Simmons and the Hawkeyes felt the Gophers took some unnecessary hits that left Simmons with bruised ribs. The Hawkeyes community got behind their star, and the 1935 matchup between the two brought extra motivation.

    Iowa Governor Clyde L. Herring added fuel to the fire by insinuating the Iowa fans would come out of the stands if Minnesota tried playing as rough as they did the year before. Minnesota Attorney General Harry H. Patterson didn’t appreciate that, ultimately accusing Herring of promoting a riot.

    Cooler heads prevailed when Minnesota Governor Floyd Olson took the attention away from the heated comments by offering up a bet. If Minnesota won, they would take home a prize hog.

    Herring agreed, and the rest was history.

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