Iowa asking fans to nominate new song for Hawkeye Wave

The University of Iowa wants your input in selecting the next song for one of the best traditions in college sports — the Hawkeye Wave.

Since 2017, nearly 70,000 fans, student-athletes, and coaches, even from the opposing teams, take a break between the first and second quarters of Iowa Football home games at Kinnick Stadium to exchange waves with patients and families inside UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

Recognized annually as one of the nation’s “Best Children’s Hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report, UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital frequently provides intensive long-term care for critically ill children. The 12th floor window was built to overlook the stadium to give patients and their families a respite on game days.

“What started as a simple gesture of support from our fans to our heroes — the children and families at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital — has turned into the greatest tradition in sports,” says Vice President for External Relations and Senior Advisor to the President Peter Matthes.

The Hawkeye Wave, which won the 2017 Disney Spirit Award, is currently accompanied by country music singer Pat Green’s song, “Wave on Wave,” over the stadium’s PA system.

“We are thankful that Pat Green really embraced the tradition and even honored us with a live performance before a packed stadium,” says Matthes. “Now five years later, we think it’s time to let fans choose the next great song to accompany the Hawkeye Wave because this is their tradition.”

Fans can submit nominations for a new song or share a personal story about the Hawkeye Wave or Stead Family Children’s Hospital at

The university will select the top eight songs for fan voting to begin on July 11. The field of eight will be narrowed to four in an initial round of fan voting. A second round of voting will identify the top two songs, and the final round of voting will determine the next anthem for the Hawkeye Wave.

The fans’ choice for the next anthem of the Hawkeye Wave will be announced on Aug. 1.

The Hawkeye football team opens its 2022 season hosting South Dakota State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 3.