Illinois football players, coaches join Iowa in the Hawkeye Wave love

Matthew Bain
Hawk Central

IOWA CITY, Ia. — Love for the Hawkeye Wave is spreading across college football.

Sep 16, 2017; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes fans wave to the Children's Hospital at the end of the first quarter against the North Texas Mean Green at Kinnick Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: USATSI-359656 ORIG FILE ID:  20170916_gma_bc9_367.jpg

Last week, Michigan State fans at Spartan Stadium waved through the TV to kids and families in the University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital

Illinois joined in the love Saturday. Along with the Hawkeyes and the near-capacity crowd in Kinnick Stadium, the Illini players and coaches waved up at the Children's Hospital in the now-famous end-of-first-quarter tradition

The referees took part, too, lining up at midfield and waving up at the hospital with their hats.

The recently finished Children's Hospital sits right next to Kinnick Stadium. The top floor features the Press Box Cafe, a rotunda of sorts with floor-to-ceiling windows that provide a perfect view of Hawkeye games for patients and families packing the cafe. You can also see signs posted on windows from the top several floors of the hospital, where young patients watch and root for their Hawkeyes. 

After every first quarter this season, fans inside Kinnick turn around and wave up to the hospital. Inside, patients and their families wave back.

Levi Thompson first promoted the idea of the wave on his Hawkeyes fan page after Krista Young, a reader of his site, suggested an in-game wave to recognize the patients and their parents watching from the brand new, 12-story hospital.

Matthew Bain covers preps, recruiting and the Hawkeyes for the Iowa City Press-Citizen, The Des Moines Register and HawkCentral. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter at @MatthewBain_.