The Prologue is Go Iowa Awesome’s annual Iowa Hawkeye football preview. It dates back as far as the Black Heart Gold Pants days and if anyone tries to steal it from us we will sue you into oblivion because we’re all lawyers here.
I’m prone to believing that Kirk Ferentz is always looking for the next Tim Dwight. Any time he’s got a quick white guy returning punts or going across the middle from the slot he’s thinking “Man, I hope this guy is the next Tim Dwight.” But no one, be it Hinkel, Brodell, VandeBerg, McCarron or Easley, could ever be Tim Dwight. He wasn’t only fast, he was small. Like 5’8 in heels small.* He wasn’t only fast, he could accelerate quicker than a Bugatti Veyron.** When they talk about something being faster than “shit through a goose”, Tim Dwight is the shit. He looked like Mr. Poopy Butthole on speed.
Tim Dwight is inarguably one of the greatest punt returners in recent Big Ten history and arguably the greatest. If you’re having a conversation about the GOAT punt returner a few names are going to come up: Dwight, Ted Ginn Jr. and Jim Leonhard. All three were first team All-Americans and held Big Ten records for punt returns at the end of their careers. When Leonhard graduated he held the career punt return yardage record. To this day, Ginn still holds records for single season yards per return (25.6!), single season punts returned for touchdowns (4) and career punts returned for touchdowns (6). One could argue that Ted Ginn Jr. was the greatest punt returner of all time because he still holds those records.
But…there’s one record he doesn’t hold: career return yards per return. Tim Dwight holds that record, averaging 15.7 yards from 1994-1997. Ginn comes in second with 14.1 from 2004-2006. Pound for pound, Dwight was a better punt returner over the course of his career. Statistically, anyway.
We don’t need to have that argument, though. For now, just enjoy highlights from the fastest number six in Iowa history. A man who played with such force and reckless abandon on punt returns that he earned himself the nickname The Kamikaze Kid.
* - This isn't true.
** - This also isn't true.