Dog of fallen Navy SEAL to lead Iowa onto the field in opener?

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There are a lot of really cool entrances in college football, from Michigan players running onto the field and high-fiving a “Go Blue” banner to Clemson players touching Howard’s Rock before racing down The Hill to many, many others.

If the following comes to fruition, however, it would easily trump those traditions on the chill-factor scale and go down as one of the most emotional and memorable entrances in recent memory.

Earlier this month, Navy SEAL and lifelong Iowa fan Jon Tumilson was one of 31 members of the United States military — including 21 of his fellow SEALS — killed when their helicopter was shot down following a mission inside of Afghanistan.  Tumilson’s funeral was earlier this week and a photo of his beloved dog laying in front of the casket throughout the entire service made headlines and caused many a room across the world to suddenly get extremely dusty.

After watching videos and seeing pictures of the poignant scene, former Hawkeyes football player Jon Lazar had an utterly brilliant idea: allow Tumilson’s dog — aptly named Hawkeye — to lead the Iowa football team onto the field before the season opener against Tennessee Tech.  Lazar told Pat Harty of the Iowa Press-Citizen that he has already broached the subject with Iowa officials and requested they make this happen

“It just tears you apart to see that (video),” Lazar said. “But I thought how great it would be for that dog to lead the Hawkeyes down to the field and to have the announcer tell the story of this dog.

“I think everybody would be crying in the stands.”

[/goose bumps]

Would there be a better way, eight days before the 10th anniversary of 9-11, for Iowa to honor the memory of both Tumilson and all his fellow serviceman who have given the ultimate sacrifice by having the soldier’s beloved dog lead his favorite football field out onto the field?

I implore Iowa officials to take Lazar’s idea and run like hell with it.  And, I would also urge any Iowa alumni reading of this idea to contact the school and implore to it run like hell with it as well.

This.  Needs.  To.  Happen.