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We all love the Hawkeyes, and we can all agree that there's nothing more awesome than Hawkeyes.

Nothing, that is, except...




(click to embiggen)

That's Capt. Justin Sime of the 389th Fighter Squadron. And that's a Hawkeye flag being held up at like 30,000 feet or whatever in his F-15E, over freaking Afghanistan, where Sime is currently deployed. Everything here's on the up-and-up -- they were on autopilot, so there's no safety regulations being flouted.

I actually played football in high school with Sime for a little while, and we weren't great friends or anything like that, but he's still a name I instantly recognized when a buddy of mine -- also a former teammate, and also a captain in the Air Force -- sent me this picture last Saturday.

Needless to say, we think this is the awesomest thing ever, and while we're not sure how international diplomacy works vis a vis flags, we're pretty sure that flying the Hawkeye flag higher than any other in the country meant that for those glorious few seconds that the picture was taken, Afghanistan was actually under the jurisdiction of the University of Iowa athletic department. No word on if Kirk Ferentz took the opportunity to send some player who was dogging it in practice to Kabul. 

Either way, we'd like to think it goes without saying, but thanks to one and all who serve our nation here and abroad. We're hoping you all come soon safe and healthy (mentally and physically) as soon as possible. And keep flying those Tigerhawks high and proud -- though if you can't manage "cruising altitude of a fighter jet" high, we won't hold it against you.