It was just a matter of time before the Iowa legend who stole CJ Beathard’s helmet and wore it around town came forward about his story. Like, there was no way he was going to stay silent forever. He had to tell his story for the good of the country and for the good of all fans of college football. And finally, he’s done it.
For those of you who have no idea what we’re talking about, please refer to the link below where we give the backstory. But if you’re too lazy to click it, here’s the fifteen-second version. Following Iowa’s historic win over #2 Michigan with a game-winning field goal, Iowa students rushed the field. In the pandemonium, a ton of stuff got stolen, including Iowa starting QB CJ Beathard’s helmet. Rumors began swirling among fans that the helmet was spotted at the bars in Iowa City.
Eventually, the cops found the “thief” wearing the helmet and confiscated it, handing it back to the Iowa equipment manager. But it was too late. The legend had been cemented.
Then the story grew even bigger when CJ Beathard talked about the incident in a press conference. “Our equipment guy told me that one of the cops walking down the street saw a kid wearing it downtown.”
So who is this mysterious opportunist? HawkeyeNation.com caught up with the myth through various connections, and he gave the website an amazing interview. We suggest you read the full interview on their site, but we’ll give you a little taste of the story, including the parts you’re probably most curious to know.
Q: Then you decided to take the helmet downtown?
A: We actually walked down Burlington and then through the Ped Mall with it. Passed several police officers and they didn’t seem to notice, but a few other fans asked to take pictures with it. I didn’t have my ID for the bars, so I needed to run home, and contemplated leaving the helmet there, but my friends were texting me expressing their need to attempt to drink out of the helmet at the bars, so I had no choice.
Q: At what point did the run-in with the police occur? How did that exchange go down?
A: I was actually shocked that I made it all the way home with no run-ins, but about 10 feet outside my apartment door a police officer pulled his car over in front of me. He was about as nice and understanding as I could have ever hoped for. A rough transcript of the exchange is below, keeping in mind I was very much caught off guard and wasn’t at my cognitive peak:
Iowa City Police officer: “Excuse me, where did you get that helmet?”
Me: “The Iowa Store.”
Iowa City Police officer: “I’ve never heard of that. Where’d you get all those stickers?”
Me: “I put them on myself?”
Iowa City Police officer: “There’s about 10 helmets missing, and one of them is C.J.’s and that says #16.”
Me: “He’s my favorite player so I bought his stickers.”
Iowa City Police Officer: “You can either give me the helmet or I can arrest you.”
Me: “Here you go.”
Sadly, no one ever got a chance to drink from the helmet.
If you had asked me about how I would imagine that exchange between the student and the policeman went, I probably would have guessed something along those exact same lines of what happened. Everyone’s in a great mood, everyone’s being polite, and no one gets injured or arrested. Overall win for the city.