Just when it looked like the Iowa basketball team would get a win in their final regular season game, they found a way to lose to the depleted Cornhuskers.
The last few losses could be justified in one way or another. Ohio State beating the Iowa basketball team at home could be attributed to the fact that road games are never easy in the Big Ten, and there were a few unnecessary distractions caused by the Iowa athletic department.
Rutgers coming in and beating the Hawks could be chalked up to not having Fran there and the fact that Rutgers just has the size to match up really well with the Hawks. Even Thursday night’s pathetic performance against Wisconsin wasn’t expected to be a great opportunity for the Hawks to win. The Kohls Center is one of the toughest places to play in the country.
Losing to Nebraska though is downright atrocious. The Cornhuskers were suiting up just seven scholarship players as Isaac Copeland Jr, Thomas Allen, and Nana Arkenten were all out for this game. That means three of Nebraska’s top six scorers were out of this game, and yet, they still managed to put up 93 points against the Iowa basketball team. For context, this is nine more points than Nebraska’s previous Big Ten conference play-high, which also came against the Hawks.
Behind a barrage of three-pointers, the Cornhuskers took what appeared to be a bad loss on Senior Day and turned it into an incredible 16-point comeback capped by winning in OT with a game-winning layup with under 10 seconds left.
This is without a doubt the worst team the Iowa basketball team has lost to this season, and they managed to do it in quite an embarrassing way.
Unlike the past few weeks though, the Hawks offense was humming for most of the game. Luka Garza, who has been pretty cold in the month of February after having a fantastic January, went off for 25 points on 10 of 16 shooting while pulling in 7 rebounds. Jordan Bohannon put in 20 as well while hitting 6 of 12 from the field, and Joe Wieskamp made 40% of his shots including a few key three-pointers for 14 points. Even Isaiah Moss made an appearance, scoring 10 points for the day and grabbing 6 rebounds.
Down the stretch, however, Iowa’s defense allowed a hapless Nebraska team back in the game. Three Huskers scored over 20 points on the day, and as a team, they shot 50% from three-pointer and 51.5% from the field. Prior to this game, Nebraska was 8th in the Big Ten in three-point shooting percentage at 34% and they were averaging just 71.4 points per game.
It also didn’t help that senior Glynn Watson Jr, playing in his final home game with Nebraska, hit five three-pointers in the final 11 minutes of game time (6 in regulation and 5 in OT).
The Huskers would manage to pull off the 93-91 victory, and the Iowa basketball team was once again on the wrong end of the box score, losing a fourth straight game in what appears to be another end of the season collapse in the Fran McCaffery era.