The Iowa basketball team, coming off a blowout loss to Michigan State, needed a win today vs Minnesota. Unfortunately, they weren’t up to the task.
After a tough loss to a very good Michigan State Spartan team (which coincidentally enough lost today vs Purdue), the Iowa basketball team needed to rebound strongly today as they are firmly in the middle of their toughest four game stretch of the season.
Unfortunately, instead of seeing the Iowa basketball team played inspired basketball, we saw arguably one of their most disappointing performances of the season. The Hawks did shoot pretty well, but defensively, they were atrocious. In fact, it was so bad that for a period of time in the second half, Fran McCaffery benched every single starter. Moreover, starting point guard Jordan Bohannon hardly saw the court towards the end of the second half when the Iowa basketball team actually made a comeback.
While the comeback attempt would ultimately fall short, this game just had a general smell of stink from the get-go.
After building an 8-point lead just eight minutes into the ball game, the Minnesota Golden Gophers let the Hawks come back into the game as Iowa managed to build a 1-point lead with six minutes remaining in the half. Rick Petino’s squad, however, was not finished and they turned it on to close out the half with a 9-point lead beating the Iowa basketball team 55 to 46.
The second half didn’t start much better as Minnesota turned their 9-point lead into a 16-point lead with just five minutes remaining. It wasn’t until that point when the Hawks started to pull things together and went on a 15-2 run to bring the game to within four points with just 1:34 remaining.
The subsequent 1:34 of basketball left me frustrated and annoyed as the Iowa basketball team proceeded to choke away golden opportunity after golden opportunity. Minnesota would finish the game winning 92-87 over McCaffery’s squad.
Offensively, Luka Garza, Tyler Cook, and Isaiah Moss carried the team combing to score 66 of Iowa’s 87 points. Cook and Moss also brought in nine and six boards, respectively. Starting guards/wings Jordan Bohannon and Joe Wieskamp continued their offensive woes as they shot a combined 1 of 5 from the field (and the one field goal made was a garbage-time layup by Bohannon in the closing seconds).
Defensively, the Iowa basketball team sucked (for lack of a better term). The Hawks allowed one of the worst shooting teams in the Big Ten to go off on them. The Gophers shot 57% from the field and 39% from three. Their season average is 44% and 32%.
By no means are the Gophers a bad basketball team. They are 15-5 after all, but they were playing without their center Daniel Oturu, who is averaging 10.2 points per game and 7.2 boards per game, and this truly was a game that the Hawks needed to win.
With the Iowa basketball team in the middle of a two-game losing streak, they are set to face #5 Michigan Friday evening. Hopefully, the extended break in between will be enough time for Fran to kick this team’s butt into gear.