It’s May Day!  That’s a special day here at NealRozendaal.com, as it marks one year from the start of this site.  So as I say happy birthday to NealRozendaal.com, I’m going to do just as I did in my six months post and use this occasion to reflect back on the past year of the site…and look ahead to the future.

Looking Back

In my post six months ago, I talked about what I hoped to achieve leading up to today.  Specifically, I mentioned four new Hawkeye features I wanted to create.  I’m pleased to report that I have made progress rolling out all four.

  • Hawkeye Personalities, where we take a look at the men behind the scenes outside of the court and playing field – we looked at a varied cast of characters, from fans like Scothawk and Gorilla Man to men like John Streif, who define what being a Hawkeye is all about

On top of all of that, we rolled out several new sections to the site, most notably:

  • The Duke Slater tab, where we migrated DukeSlater.com over to this site, making it the home of Duke Slater news and info on the web
  • The Women’s Pro Football tab, where we recognize the often-overlooked female version of America’s most popular sport

All in all, it’s been an exciting and very busy six months…and we’re still just getting started!

Looking Ahead

Unlike my six months post, I don’t plan to commit to any upcoming features today.  Actually, one of my biggest goals for this site over the next six months is to continue to add to the four features I’ve already started, as there are so many more stories to tell.

One of the reasons I don’t want to make too many definite plans is because you never know what might happen in six months’ time.  I never would have anticipated getting into women’s pro football the way I have, but I’m excited about the addition to the site.  Speaking of which…while I’ve started a section for women’s pro football, that part of the site is still under construction.  I plan to make significant progress on that in the days and months ahead.

I’d also like to take some time this offseason and touch on two Hawkeye subjects that should have some interest to my readers.  The first is the history of Hawkeye jersey numbers…which was the subject of my first book, Hawkeye Greats, By the Numbers.  The second is Hawkeye great Nile Kinnick…while I talked about him at length during Heisman week, I want to spend some more time writing about this extraordinary man.  Let’s just say that I’m kicking a few ideas around!

In July and August, we’ll start ramping up for the 2013 Hawkeye football season!  The 125th edition of Hawkeye football won’t be saddled with the high expectations of many of its predecessors, but maybe that’s a good thing.  I’m excited to see if they can get back to the postseason and once again head somewhere nice for the holidays.

And finally…the elusive fourth book.  I’m juggling so many projects that I’m not at all ready to announce it yet.  But within the next six months, I’d like to have a definite timetable for my next book’s subject and release date.

So that’s a glimpse of what’s on tap.  I have been amazed at just how much this site has grown over the past six months.  I’m gaining more readers all the time, and I can honestly say that you guys are what makes this all worthwhile.  So a big thank you to all of you…I hope you’re having as much fun reading as I am writing!  Thanks for helping to make this a great year…and as always, more to come!

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