March 2, 2012
|Game 31 | Northwestern vs. Iowa|
|Date||Saturday, March 3 | 1:36 p.m.|
|Location||Iowa City, Iowa | Carver-Hawkeye Arena|
|Game Info||Tickets | Promotions|
|Radio||Hawkeye Radio Network|
|Live Coverage||GameTracker | Twitter Game Updates|
|All-Time Series||Iowa leads, 108-56|
Iowa will honor its four seniors (Devon Archie, Bryce Cartwright, Andrew Brommer and Matt Gatens) on Mediacom Court before Saturday's game.
Iowa is 8-1 in Big Ten regular-season finales since 2002. The Hawkeyes beat sixth-ranked Purdue, 67-65, a year ago in their finale in Iowa City.
Iowa has posted four wins over RPI top 25 teams (Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin twice). Only Michigan State (six), Ohio State (five) and Michigan (five) have more.
Iowa's eight Big Ten wins are the most in a single season since collecting nine during the 2006-07 campaign.
Matt Gatens earned his first career Big Ten Player of the Week award Monday, sharing the honor with Purdue's Robbie Hummel.
Matt Gatens is one of only two Hawkeyes to ever amass over 1,500+ points, 400+ rebounds, 250+ assists and 125+ steals. Roy Marble is the only other Hawkeye to accomplish the feat.
Iowa's scoring average of 72.3 is its highest since the 2004-05 season (72.9).
Iowa won five games in the month of February, the most since the 1997-98 season (5).
Iowa is 9-1 when scoring 80 points or more, the last two seasons. The Hawkeyes are 14-0 when holding opponents to fewer than 60 points, the last two years.
HAWKEYES BEAT NEBRASKA, 62-53
Iowa shot 52 percent in the second half en route to a 62-53 triumph at Nebraska Wednesday night. The win was Iowa's third on the road against a conference opponent, the most since the 2006 season. With the Hawkeyes leading 31-30, Iowa drained seven straight field goals (four of which were 3-pointers) from 14:25-10:16 in the second half to build a comfortable 49-35 cushion. Matt Gatens scored 11 of his team-high 16 points in the second stanza, while Roy Devyn Marble netted all 11 of his points in the final 20 minutes. Bryce Cartwright also had 11 points to go along with a team-high five assists. After shooting 1-of-7 (.143) from long distance in the first stanza, the Hawkeyes came out firing after halftime, sinking 7-of-13 (.538) in the second half. Nebraska's Brandon Ubel had a game-high 17 points on 7-of-7 shooting from the field and 3-of-4 from the foul line. The rest of the Huskers shot a combined 12-of-45 (.267).
LAST GAME TIP-INS
Three Hawkeyes led the team in rebounding with five boards each: Zach McCabe, Aaron White and Matt Gatens.
Nebraska's 53 points equals the lowest point total by an Iowa opponent (Chicago State) this season.
Iowa enters Saturday 8-9 in league play, while Northwestern is 7-10 . The winner of Saturday's game will earn the seventh seed at next week's Big Ten Tournament.
Matt Gatens' 16 points moved him past Dean Oliver and into eighth place on Iowa's career scoring chart.
Matt Gatens logged 40 minutes for the third time in four games. He was on the court 39 minutes in the fourth contest.
Iowa led by four at halftime (23-19) and outrebounded Nebraska, 34-30. The Hawkeyes improved to 12-2 this year when leading at half and owning the glass.
IOWA POSTING BIG WINS
Iowa has posted six wins against teams ranked in the top 90 of the RPI, including four inside the top 20. The Hawkeyes have registered victories over Indiana (15), Michigan (17), and two wins over Wisconsin (20) and Minnesota (90). The Hawkeyes have four wins over top 25 teams; only Michigan State (six), Ohio State (five) and Michigan (five) have more.
Iowa holds a 108-56 advantage over Northwestern in the series that began with a 24-23 Wildcat win in 1905. Northwestern defeated Iowa on Feb. 9, 83-64, in Evanston. The Wildcats have won five of the last six contests, including the last four. Iowa has won 25 of the last 37. Ten of the last 14 meetings have been decided by 10 points or less, with seven of those decided by five points or less. Iowa holds a commanding 63-17 advantage in games played in Iowa City, including a 23-3 record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Northwestern snapped a five-game losing skid in Iowa City with a 90-71 win over the Hawkeyes a year ago. Iowa won the only neutral site meeting, winning 72-55 at the United Center in the first round of the 2001 Big Ten Tournament.
Northwestern enters Saturday's game with a 17-12 overall record and 7-10 mark in Big Ten play. The Wildcats have split their last four games, beating Minnesota and Penn State, but falling to Michigan (overtime) and Ohio State.
Northwestern has lost four Big Ten games by two points or less and dropped another game in overtime to Michigan (67-55). The Wildcats' last two contests were decided by two points or less: 67-66 win at Penn State and 75-73 loss to 10th-ranked Ohio State.
Northwestern lost a 75-73 decision to No. 10 Ohio State Wednesday in Evanston. The Buckeyes outrebounded the Wildcats by 26 (44-18). Both teams shot 50 percent from the floor. Drew Crawford (23) and John Shurna (22) combined to score 45 of the Wildcats' 73 points, while Ohio State's Jared Sullinger led the Buckeyes with 22 points and 18 rebounds (11 offensive boards).
John Shurna, who leads the Big Ten in scoring averaging 20.1 points per game, became Northwestern's all-time leading scorer on Feb. 18 in a 64-53 victory over Minnesota. He enters Saturday's game with 1,961 career points, 39 shy of 2,000. The senior also leads the team in rebounding (5.3), steals (1.2) and blocks (1.7).
Northwestern is 11-5 in home games, but 3-7 in true road games. The Wildcats have won two conference road contests -- at Illinois (74-70) and at Penn State (67-66).
Northwestern ranks first in the Big Ten in 3-pointers made (9.0) and assists (15.6); second in assist/turnover ratio (1.5) and 3-point field goal percentage (.387); third in turnover margin (+2.2); fourth in blocked shots (3.8) and field goal percentage (.458); and sixth in scoring offense (69.6).
John Shurna is the Big Ten scoring leader, averaging 20.1 points per game, while teammate Drew Crawford ranks fifth (16.3). Northwestern is the only conference team to have two players in the top five in league scoring. Shurna also ranks first in the Big Ten in 3-pointers per game (2.7).
Freshman point guard Dave Sobolewski ranks first in the Big Ten and third nationally in assist/turnover ratio (2.7). He also ranks ninth in the league in assists (3.6).
NORTHWESTERN WON THE LAST MEETING
Northwestern posted an 83-64 win over Iowa on Feb. 9 at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston. The Wildcats forced 18 turnovers and converted those Hawkeye miscues into 20 points. Both teams shot better than 50 percent from the field and 3-point range; Northwestern shot 56 percent (27-of-48) from the floor and 52 percent (13-of-25) from 3-point territory, while Iowa shot 51 percent (23-of-45) from the field and 50 percent (7-of-14) from long distance. Iowa had four players reach double figures in scoring: Aaron White (17), Matt Gatens (15), Melsahn Basabe (13) and Roy Devyn Marble (10). White also snagged a personal-best 12 rebounds to notch his second double-double of his collegiate career. Bryce Cartwright distributed five assists. White was red-hot from the field, making 7-of-10 field goal attempts, including 2-of-3 from 3-point range. Eighty of Northwestern's 83 points came from its starting five, led by freshman Dave Sobolewski's game-high 23 points.
IOWA, NORTHWESTERN TIP-INS
If Iowa beats Northwestern on Saturday, it will have won four of its last five regular season contests. The last time a Hawkeye team accomplished that was during the 1996-97 campaign when that squad closed out the regular season winning five-of-six.
Ten of the last 12 meetings between Iowa and Northwestern have been decided by 10 points or less, with seven of those decided by five points or less.
Iowa is 4-3 against ranked Big Ten teams and 4-6 versus unranked conference foes.
Iowa's second (Roy Devyn Marble, 11.1), third (Aaron White, 10.3), fourth (Melsahn Basabe, 7.8), fifth (Zach McCabe, 7.4) and sixth (Josh Oglesby 6.2) leading scorers are all underclassmen.
Iowa is the only Big Ten team with two players with 45+ steals (Roy Devyn Marble -- 48 and Matt Gatens -- 45).
The Hawkeyes rank first in the Big Ten in steals (7.7); third in scoring offense (72.3); and fourth in free throw percentage (.716) and 3-point field goal accuracy (.368).
Iowa ranks 51st in the country in assist/turnover ratio (1.1); 57th in assists (14.4); and 59th in steals (7.7). Individually, Matt Gatens is 45th in free throw percentage (.842), while Roy Devyn Marble is 55th in assist/turnover ratio (2.1).
The Wildcats rank fourth in the country in fewest turnovers (10.2); fifth in assist/turnover ratio (1.5); eighth in 3-pointers made (9.0); 26th in assists (15.6); and 29th in 3-point accuracy (.387). John Shurna ranks 15th in the nation in scoring (20.1).
Both Iowa's Matt Gatens and Northwestern's John Shurna rank among the Big Ten active career leaders in scoring. Shurna ranks first with 1,961, while Gatens is fourth with 1,574.
Northwestern's roster is comprised of 14 student-athletes. The roster consists of four seniors, four juniors, two sophomores and four freshmen. Five players hail from Illinois, two from Michigan, Georgia and Serbia, and one each from Indiana, Texas and California.
Matt Gatens NAMED BIG TEN CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior Matt Gatens was named Big Ten co-Player of the Week along with Purdue's Robbie Hummel on Monday. The honor is the first of Gatens' career and the first for a Hawkeye since Jake Kelly earned the weekly accolade on March 9, 2009. Gatens averaged 27.5 points in Iowa's two games last week. He poured in a game and career-high 33 points to help lift the Hawkeyes to a 67-66 upset victory over No. 15/16 Wisconsin in Iowa City. He made his first five 3-pointers in that game extending his school record streak of consecutive 3-pointers to 12 spanning the Indiana (Feb. 19) and Wisconsin (Feb. 26) contests. He finished the Wisconsin contest with seven triples (7-of-10, .700). The win was Iowa's fourth victory over a top 25 ranked opponent this season, the most since the 2005-06 campaign. "I'm very proud of Matt," said head coach Fran McCaffery. "He deserves the recognition. Not only is he playing as well as anybody in our league, but I also think in the country right now. He is the epitome of character and class not only in terms of what he's done on the floor, but how he carries himself." The Iowa City native continued his white-hot shooting at Illinois on Sunday, sinking his first five 3-pointers for the second straight contest. Gatens finished with a game-high 22 points, marking the fourth consecutive game he scored more than 20 points. He finished the game shooting 5-of-6 (.833) from long distance. His five 3-pointers against the Illini moved him past Chris Kingsbury and into second place on Iowa's career 3-point list with 228 career treys. Gatens shot at a 75 percent clip (12-of-16) from 3-point range in last week's two games.
GATENS TO MAKE HISTORY
Senior Matt Gatens will become the first Hawkeye to lead the team in free throw percentage four consecutive seasons. Also, he will become only the seventh Hawkeye since 1939, and the first to do so since Acie Earl (1991-93), to lead the team in scoring three straight seasons. Other former Hawkeyes leading the squad in scoring three consecutive years include: Dick Ives (1944-46); Bill Logan (1954-56); Dave Gunther (1957-59); Don Nelson (1960-62); Greg Stokes (1983-85); Acie Earl (1991-93).
HAWKEYES SURGED IN FEBRUARY
Iowa won five of its last eight games, including winning two of the last four against ranked opponents (No. 18 Indiana and No. 15 Wisconsin). The five victories in February marked the most by a Hawkeye team since the 1997-98 campaign. Iowa held seven of its eight February opponents to fewer than 70 points and four of those below 40 percent from the field. The previous six teams the Hawkeyes faced averaged 81.2 points and 50.4 percent shooting. In eight February contests, Matt Gatens averaged 21.6 points, bolstered by 34-of-58 (.586) shooting from long distance. The 21.6 February scoring average ranks third behind Northwestern's John Shurna (22.8) and Tim Frazier (21.8) of Penn State. Aaron White averaged 11.9 points and 7.6 rebounds, while Roy Devyn Marble averaged 10.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.6 assists.
REBOUNDING KEY IN OUTCOMES
In Iowa's eight Big Ten wins, it has posted a +3.6 rebounding margin advantage. However, in its nine conference losses, Iowa has been outrebounded by 5.1 boards. Overall, Iowa is 12-2 in games this season when having the edge on the glass. The two losses when the Hawkeyes had a positive rebounding margin came on the road at Iowa State and Northwestern.
NOTING Matt Gatens...
Is one of only two Hawkeyes (Roy Marble) to amass 1,500+ points, 400+ rebounds, 250+ assists and 125+ steals.
His 27 triples since Feb. 16 are the most in the country. Vanderbilt's John Jenkins is second (23), followed by Keaton Cole of Western Carolina (21).
Averaged 25.3 points per game the last four contests.
Led Iowa in scoring the last five games, which is his longest consecutive streak of leading the team in scoring in his career.
Scored 55 points in two games last week (27.5 ppg.), earning co-Big Ten Player of the Week and NetScout Basketball's Big Ten Player of the Week accolades. He has earned NetScout Basketball's weekly honor the last two weeks. Additionally, America voted the senior the "Capital One Cup Impact Performer of the Week" on ESPN.com.
Has made 43.5 percent (67-of-154) of his 3-point attempts this season. That is the best percentage by a Hawkeye, with a minimum of 125 attempts, since Kent McCausland made 52 percent (70-of-134) during the 1996-97 season.
His 65.9 percent (27-of-41) shooting percentage from long distance ranks second best in the country since Feb. 16 (first if you take in account a minimum of 25 attempts). South Dakota State's Jordan Dykstra is first (.786, 11-of-14).
Scored 85 points in a span of three games (Indiana, Wisconsin and Illinois). The last time a Hawkeye netted 85 points or more in three straight games against conference competition was Roy Marble (86) in 1989. Marble scored 30 at Michigan, 37 at Illinois and 19 vs. Indiana. The last time a Hawkeye scored 85 points or more against any teams was Adam Haluska (88) in 2006. Haluska had 21 points at Drake, 36 vs. Georgia State and 21 against Texas Southern.
Averaged 21.6 points per game in February, which ranked third in the Big Ten behind Northwestern's John Shurna (22.8) and Tim Frazier of Penn State (21.8).
Became the first Big Ten player to score 30+ versus two teams (Indiana and Wisconsin) ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 since 1996-97.
Became the fourth Big Ten player in the last 10 seasons to score 30+ points in back-to-back games vs. league opponents.
The 33 points against Wisconsin are the second-most by a Big Ten player in conference play this season (Illinois' Brandon Paul had 43 versus Ohio State).
Made a school-record 12 consecutive triples spanning the Indiana (Feb. 19) and Wisconsin (Feb. 23) contests.
Became the first Hawkeye since Adam Haluska in 2007 to score 30 points in consecutive games. Haluska netted 33 vs. Indiana and 34 at Minnesota. Gatens is one of five players to score 30+ points in consecutive Big Ten games since 2000-01 (Marcus Taylor of Michigan State in 2002; Minnesota's Vincent Grier in 2005; Evan Turner of Ohio State in 2010; Iowa's Adam Haluska in 2007).
His 101 points the last four games pushed the senior past Greg Brunner, Don Nelson, Andre Woolridge and Dean Oliver and into eighth place on Iowa's all-time scoring chart with 1,574 points. He is only four points from tying Adam Haluska for seventh.
After 101 points in four games (32-of-58, .552 FGs and 22-of-34, .647 3-pt FGs), he has vaulted to fifth in conference scoring (289 points). He is only nine points behind Ohio State's Jared Sullinger (298 points). Gatens is the second-highest scoring senior in the league behind Northwestern's John Shurna (20.6).
His five 3-pointers at Illinois (Feb. 26) moved him past Chris Kingsbury (1994-96) and into second place on Iowa's all-time 3-pointers made list. He enters Saturday's game versus Northwestern with 231 career triples.
Surpassed the 20-point plateau four consecutive games (Penn State, Indiana, Wisconsin and Illinois), eight times this season and 17 in his career. The last time a Hawkeye netted 20+ points in four straight games against Big Ten competition was Andre Woolridge in 1997. Woolridge tallied 20 at Purdue, 21 vs. Wisconsin, 27 vs. Ohio State and 25 at Michigan.
Made 40-of-113 (.354) from 3-point range the first 25 games of the season. Gatens has made 65.9 percent (27-of-41) from long distance the last five outings. He has made 22 of his last 34 (.647) 3-point attempts the last three games.
The 33 points scored against the Badgers are the second-most scored by a Wisconsin opponent in the last four years. Gatens and Kansas State's Jacob Pullen (38 points against the Badgers in the 2011 NCAA Tournament) were the two highest scoring outputs since Davidson's Stephen Curry tallied 33 points in the 2008 NCAA Tournament's Sweet 16 on March 28, 2008.
Made a combined 14 triples against Indiana and Wisconsin, which is the most ever by a Hawkeye in a two-game span. He sank a combined 19 treys spanning three contests (Indiana, Wiscosin and Illinois), the most ever by a Hawkeye over a span of three games.
Is averaging 15.7 points, the highest scoring average by a Hawkeye since Adam Haluska averaged 20.5 points in 2007.
Is only the third player to hit seven+ 3-pointers in back-to-back Big Ten games (versus Indiana and Wisconsin) since 1996-97. Talor Battle (Penn State) and Jon Diebler (Ohio State) accomplished the feat a year ago.
Has made a personal single-season best 67 triples, besting 58 he sank his sophomore campaign. He is shooting at a 43.5 percent clip from long distance this season, which is also a single-season best. He shot 40 percent from 3-point range as a freshman.
His 67 treys rank 10th best in a single season. He is only three 3-pointers from tying two others (Jeff Horner in 2006 and Kent McCausland in 1997) for eighth on the list.
NUMBER OF THE WEEK -- 13
Iowa has 13 home wins this season (13-5), the most since collecting 13 home victories in 2009. Five of the Hawkeyes' 13 victories have come in league play.
CLEANING THE GLASS
Aaron White has seen his rebounding numbers increase in Big Ten play. The freshman averaged 4.8 boards in nonconference action and has crashed the boards even more in conference play, averaging a team-best 6.1. White has led the Hawkeyes in rebounding six of the last seven games, including a streak of five straight, which is the longest streak by a Hawkeye this season and the longest streak since Aaron Fuller led the team in six consecutive contests in 2010. White is averaging 7.6 rebounds over his last eight games, including three games with 10+ rebounds. He ranked fourth in the Big Ten in February rebounding.
IMPROVED 3-POINT SHOOTING
Thanks in large part to Matt Gatens' 3-point shooting accuracy as of late, the Hawkeyes have seen better 3-point shooting percentages during the month of February. Iowa made 40.9 percent of its 3-point attempts in the month of February, the third best mark in the Big Ten behind Purdue (.413) and Northwestern (.412).
GATENS DELIVERS SECOND HALF OUTBURSTS
Matt Gatens has put up big numbers in the second half in four of the last five games. Gatens has scored in bunches down the stretch to help Iowa post some big victories in the month of February. The senior scored 22 points in the second half vs. Indiana; 19 at Penn State; 15 vs. Wisconsin and 11 at Nebraska.
GATENS CLIMBING CHARTS
Matt Gatens' recent scoring surge (101 points the last four games) has vaulted him past Jeff Horner, Greg Brunner, Don Nelson and Andre Woolridge and into eighth place on Iowa's career scoring chart. The senior is only four points from tying Adam Haluska (2005-07) for seventh. Gatens enters Saturday's contest versus Northwestern with 1,574 career points. Additionally, his five triples at Illinois moved him past Chris Kingsbury (1994-96) and into second place on Iowa's all-time 3-pointers made chart. Gatens enters Wednesday's game at Nebraska with 228 treys. Jeff Horner (2003-06) is the record holder with 262. Gatens is one of only two players in school history to have 1,550+ points, 400+ rebounds and 250+ assists. The senior has 1,574 points, 444 rebounds and 283 assists. Roy Marble (1986-89) had 2,116 points, 668 rebounds, 288 assists and 183 steals. Gatens is only six steals from cracking the top 10 in career thefts at Iowa. The native of Iowa City will finish his career in the top 15 in scoring and steals and top five in free throw percentage and 3-pointers made.
ESPN.COM RANKS NATION'S TOP FRESHMEN
ESPN.com released a midseason report on the nation's top freshmen. Included in the list is Iowa's Aaron White. White is ranked No. 15. Indiana's Cody Zeller is second and Trey Burke of Michigan is seventh. White ranks third in Iowa scoring (10.3) and first in rebounding (5.5).
Freshmen Aaron White and Josh Oglesby have combined for 11 games of scoring 15 or more points this season. White has scored in double figures in 12 of the last 20 contests, including netting 15 points or more in eight of those outings.
WHITE EARNS STARTING SPOT
Aaron White was Iowa's most productive player off the bench the first 21 games, but has started the last nine. The freshman has averaged 11.8 points and six rebounds the last 19 games. White earned his first career start at No. 16 Indiana on Jan. 31. He stuffed the stat sheet with 17 points, nine rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals in Iowa's triumph over Penn State (Feb. 4). His efforts earned him Big Ten co-Freshman of the Week accolades, which is the third time (Nov. 14, Dec. 26 and Feb. 6) he earned the weekly distinction. White's numbers the last six games have been impressive, averaging 11.5 points and 7.5 rebounds. He posted consecutive doubles at Northwestern (Feb. 9) and Penn State (Feb. 16) and was two points shy of notching his third straight versus No. 18 Indiana (Feb. 19). The rookie scored 17 points (7-of-10 FG, 2-of-3 3-pt FG) and corralled a personal-best 12 boards against the Wildcats. White totaled 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds to go along with career-best three rejections at Penn State. White has scored in double digits 13 times, including 12 of the last 20 games. White has led the team in rebounding seven of the last 10 contests. The 6-foot-8 wing player has scored 15 points or more eight times, which is the third most by a Big Ten rookie this season. White was named Big Ten co-Freshman of the Week after his performance in Iowa's victory over Chicago State (Nov. 11). The native of Strongsville, Ohio, shined in his Hawkeye debut, leading all scorers and rebounders with a personal-best 19 points and 10 boards. The 19 points are the most by an Iowa freshman in an opener, equaling Dick Ives' 19 scored against Nebraska in his debut on Dec. 10, 1943. Furthermore, White's performance marked the first time a Hawkeye posted a double-double, in a season opener, since Dean Oliver had 10 points and 12 assists in a victory over Chicago State in 1997. It was the first time a Hawkeye freshman had a double-double, points and rebounds, since Jess Settles had 13 points and 11 rebounds versus Drake in 1993.
MARBLE ADVANCES TO FINALS OF GEICO PLAY OF THE YEAR
Hawkeye fans can vote for Roy Devyn Marble in the finals of the GEICO Play of the Year. Marble had an emphatic one-handed slam vs. Minnesota on Feb 1. Fans can vote for Marble once per day until March 5 at facebook.com/bestofcollegebasketball. The winner will be announced on GEICO presents Best of College Basketball 2012 on CBS March 25, at noon (CT). The seven other finalists are: Christian Watford (Indiana), Robbie Hummel (Purdue), Damen Bell-Holter (Oral Roberts), Chase Spreen (Lindsey Wilson), Peyton Siva (Louisville), C.J. Fair (Syracuse), and Isaiah Sykes (Central Florida).
STAT SHEET STUFFER
Roy Devyn Marble's level of play has been stellar the last 25 games. The sophomore has averaged 12 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.8 assists during that span. Also, he is shooting 43 percent from the field and 71 percent from the foul line during the 25-game stretch. He has amassed a solid assist-to-turnover ratio this season. He has 112 assists to only 53 turnovers, ranking fifth in the Big Ten (2.1) and 31st nationally. Marble has been credited with four assists or more 16 times this season, including collecting six or more four of the last five games (six at Penn State, seven vs. Indiana; a career-best eight against Wisconsin and six at Illinois). Last season, Marble averaged 5.7 points, 2.4 rebounds, and was credited with 41 assists and 21 steals in 31 contests. He started the last six games of 2010-11. Also, he shot 53 percent from the free throw line (35-of-66). This year, Marble has seen improved numbers, averaging 11.1 points, 3.9 rebounds, and has collected 112 assists and 53 steals. He has started the last 22 contests. From the foul line this season, the sophomore has seen significant improvement, shooting 71.8 percent (94-of-131).
IOWA VS. RANKED TEAMS
Iowa played seven games against ranked competition this season (4-3), winning the last two. The four wins are the most Iowa has collected in a season since winning nine during the 2005-06 campaign. The Hawkeyes beat No. 11 Wisconsin (72-65) on Dec. 31 in Madison and No. 15 Wisconsin (67-66) on Feb. 23 in Iowa City, 13th-ranked Michigan (75-59) on Jan. 14 in Iowa City and 18th-ranked Indiana (78-66) on Feb. 19 in Iowa City. Iowa fell to No. 6 Ohio State (76-47) on Jan. 7 in Iowa City, No. 6 Michigan State (95-61) on Jan. 10 in East Lansing and No. 16 Indiana (103-89) on Jan. 29 in Bloomington.
HAWKEYE BIG TEN FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGES
In Iowa's eight Big Ten victories, opponents were just 51-of-186 (.274) from long distance and 183-of-454 (.403) overall from the field. Iowa made 193-of-429 (.450) from the field and 46-of-113 (.407) from the 3-point range in those wins. Conversely, Hawkeye opponents shot 50 percent (260-of-518) from the field and 62-of-163 (.380) from 3-point territory, compared to 44.5 percent (210-of-472) from the field and 36 percent (48-of-132) from long distance for Iowa, in the Hawkeyes' nine conference defeats.
SINKING THE FREEBEES
Last year, Iowa's free throw percentage was 67.6 percent. This season, the Hawkeyes have improved in that area, shooting 71.6 percent, which ranks fifth best in the Big Ten. Twenty-two percent of Iowa's offense this year has come from the foul line. The Hawkeyes have missed only 40 free throws (123-of-163, .755) in the final five minutes of games. Iowa has attempted 20 free throws or more 18 times this season (12-6), nine of which have come during league play, including seven of the last 12 games.
OGLESBY HAS CAREER GAME
Freshman Josh Oglesby had two of his best games of the season, both against Indiana. Oglesby came off the bench to score a career-best 24 points at Indiana on Jan. 29. The native of Cedar Rapids missed only four of his 12 field-goal attempts. His previous high was 16 points against Northern Illinois on Nov. 17. The six triples tie for the 15th-most in a single game for the Hawkeyes. Additionally, the 24 points are the most by a Hawkeye freshman in a game since Melsahn Basabe posted 25 at Michigan, almost a year to the day, on Jan. 30, 2011. In the return game against the Hoosiers (Feb. 19), Oglesby netted 11 points, five of which were scored at the free throw line. Oglesby started his first career game at Penn State (Feb. 16). The rookie played a season-high 27 minutes and had three points, three assists and three rebounds against the Nittany Lions. He tallied nine second-half points at Illinois last Sunday and netted eight points in Iowa's victory at Nebraska Wednesday. The native of Cedar Rapids has started the last five games. He is averaging 6.2 points in 30 games this season. Oglesby has made 36 triples, which are the fourth most by a Hawkeye freshman in a single season at Iowa. Matt Gatens holds the record with 52 (2009). Oglesby is shooting 38.6 percent beyond the arc, which currently ranks as the seventh best percentage in a season by an Iowa rookie. Fifty-eight percent of Oglesby's scoring production has come from 3-point territory (108-of-187 points), which ranks third amongst Big Ten players. Oglesby has led the team in scoring four times (Northern Illinois, Creighton, Clemson and Indiana).
Fran McCaffery has assembled one of the most experienced coaching staffs in the country. Assistant coaches Kirk Speraw, Sherman Dillard and Andrew Francis have over six decades of combined coaching experience. Furthermore, the entire coaching staff combines for 47 years of head coaching experience. Director of Basketball Operations Jerry Strom is in his 31st season as a member of the Iowa basketball staff. Additionally, Iowa's new video coordinator, Al Seibert, has 18 years of collegiate coaching experience.
HAWKEYE FAST BREAKS
The Big Ten is the No. 1 ranked conference in the RPI and Sagarin ratings. Iowa's Sagarin rating is 91 and a strength of schedule of 27. Iowa's RPI rating is 124, while its schedule strength is 73.
Iowa is 6-4 in games decided by nine points or fewer and 10-10 in games decided by 10 or more points.
Iowa has made 477 free throws this season, the most it has sank in a single-season since 2005-06. Iowa made 501 free throws in 2005-06.
The Hawkeyes were ranked ninth (.352) in the Big Ten in 3-point field goal percentage (overall games) in mid-January. Iowa has since vaulted to third (.384).
Ten of Iowa's 14 losses have come to teams ranked in the RPI top 75.
For the second straight year, Iowa has won its first two games in the month of February. Last year, the Hawkeyes beat Michigan State (Feb. 2) and Indiana (Feb. 5); this season Iowa topped Minnesota (Feb. 1) and Penn State (Feb. 4).
Iowa averages 78.9 points in its wins, compared to 64.8 points in its defeats, a differential of 14.1 points. The Hawkeyes own a +16.8 point differential in their scoring defense, and +9.5 rebounding and +6.1 assists margins in wins compared to losses.
Iowa's attendance numbers are up again this season, after a 20 percent bump a year ago. Last season, Iowa averaged 11,096 fans. Through 18 home games this season, the Hawkeyes are averaging 11,643.
Freshman Josh Oglesby became the first Hawkeye reserve to lead the team in scoring, in back-to-back games (Northern Illinois and Creighton), since Ricky Davis paced Iowa with 25 and 18 on the road at Wisconsin (Feb. 3) and Michigan State (Feb. 7), respectively, in 1998. Like Oglesby, Davis accomplished the feat as a freshman.
After winning at No. 11 Wisconsin on Dec. 31 (72-65) and on the road at Minnesota (64-62) on Jan. 4, Iowa won two-straight Big Ten road games for the first time since 2007. The Hawkeyes won at Michigan on Jan. 31, 2007 (69-62) and at Minnesota on Feb. 7 (91-78). Iowa beat Indiana at home on Feb. 3 (81-75) in between those two road victories. The last time Iowa won consecutive road games in back-to-back games was 1998, beating Ohio State (61-46) on Jan. 14 and Minnesota (82-69) on Jan. 18.
At least 10 players have seen action in 21 of Iowa's 30 games.
Iowa has had five players score in double figures three times (North Carolina A&T, Drake and Central Arkansas). The Hawkeyes had five players score 12 points or more in its win over North Carolina A&T (Nov. 14). It marked only the fourth time the Hawkeyes had five players tally 12 points or more in a game (UW-Green Bay in 2003, Michigan in 2004, SIU-Edwardsville in 2010 and North Carolina A&T in 2011).
IMPROVEMENT UNDER McCAFFERY IN SECOND YEAR
Fran McCaffery-coached teams have posted improved win totals and scoring output from their first year to second with McCaffery as a head coach. At Lehigh, his team improved by two wins (13 in 1986 to 15 in 1987). His UNC Greensboro team had four more victories from 2000 (15) and 2001 (19). At Siena his team improved by five victories, registering 15 in 2006 to 20 in 2007. His Lehigh team averaged 2.8 more points its second year compared to year one. His UNC Greensboro team had a +1.9 scoring increase and +1.8 at Siena. Currently, Iowa is averaging 5.1 more points this year compared to last season.
IOWA IN CARVER-HAWKEYE ARENA
Iowa has compiled a 361-116 (.757) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena since the facility opened in January, 1983. Iowa is 167-92 (.645) in Big Ten games and 194-24 (.890) in non-Big Ten contests.
HAWKEYES ARE TOUGH AT HOME
Iowa has won 85 of its 120 games (.708) in Carver-Hawkeye Arena (15,500) over the last eight seasons, including win streaks of 21 straight overall and 12 straight Big Ten Conference wins. Iowa has won 10 of its last 20 home games against ranked opponents. Iowa was a perfect 17-0 at home in 2006, 14-2 in 2007, 10-8 in 2008, 13-4 in 2009, 9-9 in 2010 and 8-8 in 2011.
Iowa has played 2,655 games since beginning basketball in 1902. Iowa's overall record is 1,593-1,062 (.600). That includes a 955-352 (.731) record in home games, a 548-720 (.432) record in contests away from Iowa City, a 711-727 (.494) mark in Big Ten games and a 361-116 (.757) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Check out the Iowa basketball team's new website, HawkeyeBasketball.com, devoted to everything on-and-off-the-court surrounding the program. HawkeyeBasketball.com, allows fans a chance to go behind the scenes with the Hawkeye basketball program on and off the court. The site is complete with exclusive videos, photo galleries and content featuring the basketball program. HawkeyeBasketball.com will be updated throughout the year with exclusive videos, including game highlights and player features, along with news stories and other content.
"HAWK TALK WITH Fran McCaffery"
University of Iowa basketball fans may join Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery and radio announcer Gary Dolphin Monday nights for the "Hawk Talk with Fran McCaffery" radio call-in show. The show takes place at Carlos O'Kelly's Mexican Cafe in Iowa City from 7-8:30 p.m. Fans can call in and ask the coach a question by calling 1-877-464-2957.
ON THE HORIZON
All 12 Big Ten teams will converge in Indianapolis next week for the conference tournament, March 8-11. The tournament will take place at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Iowa will open tournament play Thursday against an opponent to be determined after regular season competition concludes this weekend.