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Iowa History Daily: September 1 - Ed Podolak

Iowa History Daily: On September 1, 1947, Iowa Hawkeye legend Ed Podolak was born on a farm near Atlantic, Iowa, in Cass County. A gridiron standout for Atlantic, Iowa, and the Kansas City Chiefs, Podolak’s color commentary for Hawkeye football endeared him to generations of Iowans.

A multisport athlete for Atlantic High School, Podolak shined as a quarterback on the gridiron while helping lead the Trojans to back-to-back undefeated seasons during his last two years of high school. In basketball, Podolak played forward at Atlantic while guiding the Trojans to back-to-back state tournament appearances.

Heading east to Iowa City, Podolak stepped in as starting quarterback for the Hawkeyes during his sophomore season. His first start garnered him “Offensive Player of the Week” when he guided Iowa to a 42-7 win over Arizona. Five games into his senior season during 1968, Podolak moved to tailback when the team’s starter went down. In his second start at tailback Podolak set a Big 10 single-game rushing record with 286 yards. He went on to win All-Big 10 Honors for the season.

A second round draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs, Podolak went on to become the organization’s all-time leading rusher during a nine-year career. After winning the Super Bowl during his rookie season, he racked up 4,451 yards and 34 touchdowns on 1,158 carries and caught 288 passes for 2,456 yards and six touchdowns. After retirement from the NFL, Podolak headed up to the broadcasting booth where he endeared himself to generations of Hawkeye fans by providing color commentary alongside Jim Zabel and Gary Dolphin. #IowaOTD #IowaHistoryDaily #IowaHistoryCalendar


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