The Iowa basketball team has not dropped two straight in pretty embarrassing fashion, but Hawkeye nation shouldn’t panic yet.
Believe me, I get it. It’s incredibly frustrating to watch the Iowa basketball team limp to the finish line in February again. If I knew why they did it with this much consistency, I would tell you, but I don’t.
All I know is that it sure seems like it is happening again. The Iowa basketball team has now lost their last two and three of their last four. To make matters worse, the last two losses were double-digit losses and the loss against Rutgers was the first non-quadrant one loss for the Hawks this season.
This mini freefall has Iowa basketball fans panicking and for good reason. The offense can’t buy a bucket, suspensions are flying around everywhere, and the defense is looking much like last year’s defense than the defense we saw at times earlier this season. That being said, all is not lost with this team, and as we have seen in a few games this year, this veteran squad of players can turn it on at any moment. They just need an opportunity.
Fortunately enough for the Hawks, they could lose their next two regular season games, drop their first game in conference play and STILL make the NCAA Tournament. They are essentially a lock for the tournament. As we alluded to in an earlier article, the Hawks just needed to get to the magical 20-win threshold. They surpassed that with the last-second buzzer beater over Rutgers two weeks ago.
By all accounts, they are good to go. The Hawks are 21-8, and they hold four quadrant one wins with only one non-quadrant one loss. Their NET Ranking is 41st as of posting this, and they are 39th in KenPom. Let’s not forget that not only did the get past the 20-win mark, but they did it while playing in arguably the nation’s toughest conference.
If the season were to end today, eight Big Ten teams would be in the NCAA Tournament, tied for the most. That is not lost on the tournament committee.
With two games remaining on the road at Wisconsin and at Nebraska, the Iowa basketball team has a premier opportunity to collect two more quadrant one wins before the regular season ends while also building some positive momentum heading into the Big Ten Conference tournament.
Hopefully, these last two losses were enough to kick Iowa’s butt in gear.
If, however, the Hawks struggle this last week of the regular season, I will 100% fully support the panic mode. Momentum is huge in March, and losing four straight is never a great way to finish the season.