So I rolled into Pittsburgh about 1 p.m., Eastern time, and saw a lot of people on downtown streets wearing black-and-gold jerseys.
Ah, the Hawkeye fans are already here en masse, I thought.
I thought wrong.
Pittsburghers like to wear Pittsburgh Steelers garb. Judging by how many adult men and women were donning No. 7 Ben Roethlisberger jerseys on a work day (Casual dress Fridays to the extreme?), I’d say Ben is No. 1 here in the Steel City.
Hey, the guy did quarterback a Super Bowl-champion team here three seasons ago.
But it isn’t just Roethlisberger’s name featured on jerseys worn by the locals. It’s receiver Hines Ward. It’s defensive back Troy Polamalu. It’s linebacker Jack Lambert, who hasn’t suited up for the Steelers in three decades or so.
For once, Hawkeye fans have gone to another city and were forced to blend in with the natives. That must have been a strange feeling.
For all of you who have opted to stay home Saturday instead of making the trip here for the Iowa-Pittsburgh game, know that I’ll be live blogging starting at 10 a.m. Iowa time. I’ll describe what Saturday morning looks like here. And what Friday night looked like. I’m going to the Houston Astros-Pittsburgh Pirates game, and there will probably be more Hawkeye fans there than Pirate fans.
Which may not be saying much given the sad state of the Pirates.