Hawkeye alum now leading DOJ, at the center of political firestorm
IOWA CITY, Iowa (CBS2/FOX28) —
Former Hawkeye Football player Matt Whitaker is now the Acting Attorney General of the United States. Whitaker played on some of the best teams Hayden Fry ever coached at Iowa, including the 1991 Rose Bowl team. Whitaker was a Tight End with two career touchdowns.
He studied law at the University of Iowa and was most recently Chief of Staff to Attorney General Sessions. Whitaker has also been an outspoken critic of the Special Counsel investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 Election. That's why many are concerned his appointment to the top job, over Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, is a sign President Trump might try to stifle the ongoing probe.
One of Whitaker's former coaches at Iowa is not worried. Don Patterson served as an Receiver Coach and Offensive Coordinator during Whitaker's time at Iowa. "Matt was a kind of person that was always reliable and everything he was asked to do."
But that reliability, in the case of his new boss President Trump, is what has others worried. "I don't think anyone hired by Trump can be trusted to be honest." Said Alecs Mickunas, a graduate student at the University of Iowa. Mickunas was one of hundreds who demonstrated on the Pentacrest, calling for Whitaker to recuse himself from the investigation, and for Congress to take steps to protect Mueller from termination.
Despite the turmoil and criticism, Coach Patterson remains confident in his former player. "He sees himself, always has seen himself, as a public servant. But he's someone that yuo can trust to do the right thing at all times."