Oct. 28, 2012
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EVANSTON, Ill. — They are called effort plays. On Saturday, a majority were made by University of Iowa senior cornerback Micah Hyde.
Hyde opened the second quarter of the Iowa-Northwestern football game Oct. 27 by downing a 37-yard punt by John Wienke at the Wildcat 1-yard line. On the next play, he caught Wildcat speedster Venric Mark from behind in the open field after a 72-yard pickup. Hyde recovered a Kain Colter fumble early in the fourth quarter.
“Coach talks to us all the time about doing stuff like that,” Hyde said. “Effort plays.”
Hyde says the team works daily on downing punts.
“It was a team effort, it wasn’t just me making the plays,” Hyde said. “On every play that I made, there was a great job by my teammates working hard, too.”
Hyde’s finest effort might have been one of the most disheartening of the day for the Hawkeyes. On the first snap after the “effort play” to pin Northwestern on its 1, Mark broke through the Hawkeye front and appeared to be end zone-bound. But Hyde sprinted from Mark’s left, ran him down, and made a touchdown-saving tackle.
“I was trying to make a positive out of a negative play,” Hyde said. “That’s just what I did. We knew both the guys back there (quarterback Kain Colter and Mark) were fast. I had an angle and I kept running after him. I didn’t want to give up on the play.”
Hyde’s highlights didn’t translate into an Iowa victory. The Hawkeyes (4-4 overall, 2-2 Big Ten) were defeated 28-17 in front of 44,121 fans on Ryan Field. The Hawkeyes trailed 28-3 with less than 26 minutes remaining in the game, but the outcome wasn’t decided until the final moments.
“That’s our team, we keep fighting,” Hyde said. “We know we’re a young team. You can’t doubt us when it comes to effort. We keep fighting until the end of the game. We do that week in and week out.”
Hyde’s next opportunity to make more effort plays is Saturday, Nov. 3, against the Indiana Hoosiers (3-5, 1-3) in Bloomington. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. (CT).
“After watching film (of the Northwestern game Sunday), we will let it go and put it in the past,” Hyde said. “We will come out to practice on Tuesday with a lot of enthusiasm: keeping the heads up, running around having fun.”
With their sights on an improved Hoosier team that is coming off a 31-17 win at Illinois on Oct. 27. Indiana is 1-3 at home this season.
“We still have four games left in the regular season. Saturday is another important game,” Hyde said. “That’s another building block we have to have to win the next couple games.”
To watch a postgame interview with Hyde at Ryan Field, click HERE.