Iowa Basketball: Jarrod Uthoff season review

Mar 17, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes forward Jarrod Uthoff (20) warms up during a practice day before the first round of the NCAA men
Mar 17, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes forward Jarrod Uthoff (20) warms up during a practice day before the first round of the NCAA men /

For the past couple weeks, Dear Old Gold has been giving out player reviews for the contributors from the 2015-16 Iowa basketball team.  Yesterday, we looked at Peter Jok, and today we turn our focus to Jarrod Uthoff.

Jarrod Uthoff #20
Senior Forward
Stats: 18.9 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 45.2% FG

After being a key bench player as a sophomore and the second option behind Aaron White as a junior, Jarrod Uthoff took over the role as the team’s best player in his senior season.  Uthoff took his game to a whole new level this season.  He was a unanimous first-team All-Big Ten selection, was in the conversation for Big Ten Player of the Year, and was a finalist for the Wooden Award.  He was not just the star of Iowa basketball, he became a star nationally this season.

When Aaron White graduated last year, most assumed that Jarrod Uthoff would take over his role as the go-to guy for the Iowa basketball team.  However, I don’t think many saw Uthoff becoming one of the best players in all of college basketball.

In his junior season, Uthoff averaged a respectable 12.3 points per game in 30 minutes, while shooting just 43 percent from the field and 39 percent from three.  Uthoff had some good games early, but he jumped onto the national scene with a 32 point effort against Iowa State, including scoring 30 first half points against the Cyclones.

Conference play was much of the same as Uthoff had back-to-back 25 point efforts in wins at Purdue and at home against Nebraska.  Early on in the season, he was impressive, not just for his point totals, but also for his high shooting percentages.  Through the first 10 conference games, he was shooting 44.8% from the field in conference play.  Not surprisingly, when Uthoff’s shooting percentages began to decrease, so did the play of the Iowa Hawkeyes.

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The most underrated part of his game was his defense.  Uthoff led the league in blocked shots, but he also was very good at staying in front of his man, which is something that Iowa had some trouble with this season.  Uthoff had 14 games with three or more blocked shots this season, including six in a close win over Minnesota in which Uthoff also added 24 points and 15 rebounds.

One negative in what was a terrific season for Uthoff was that, at times, Uthoff would jack up shots early in the shot clock from far behind the three point line.

In fairness to him, some of them would go in, but it still did not make them good shots.  This happened more at the end of the season when Iowa was struggling to get contributions from other players besides he and Peter Jok.

Next: Hoops: A Look at the Class of 2016

The pressure was on Jarrod Uthoff to step up this season and he did just that, and then some.  Uthoff gets an A for the season.  I believe he will make it three years in a row with an Iowa senior being drafted in the second round, however I do think that he has the best chance at playing regularly in the NBA.

At 6-9 and 220 pounds, he is the prototypical size of a small forward in the NBA, and unlike Aaron White, he is a very good shooter, but can also handle the ball.

Final Grade: A