Iowa-ISU Rivalry Entering Another Level - Hawkeye Sports Official Athletic Site
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Iowa-ISU Rivalry Entering Another Level
2 teams to meet as ranked foes for 1st time since 1987
UI head coach Fran McCaffery says the status of the two teams 'legitimizes' the Iowa-Iowa State series.

UI head coach Fran McCaffery says the status of the two teams 'legitimizes' the Iowa-Iowa State series.
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Dec. 11, 2013

Iowa-Iowa State Previw

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The most important 40 minutes of basketball within the state of Iowa border is entering another level when the University of Iowa and Iowa State's men's basketball teams meet Friday night for the first time as ranked foes since 1987.

2011-12 Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series, 250 wide

It will be just the second time in the 66-game history where both teams are ranked. Iowa is No. 22 in the USA Today/Coaches poll and 23rd by the Associated Press; Iowa State is 16th by the coaches and 17th by the AP.

"It legitimizes everything," UI head coach Fran McCaffery said during a news conference Wednesday in the Media Room inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. "You have two really good teams going at it. When you're a player, you want to play in meaningful games.

"You want to play in games that mean a lot to a lot of people, and this game means a lot to a lot of people. It's an important game. It's why you work so hard. It's an opportunity you cherish, you'll remember, you want to play and prepare your best, and that's what we'll try to do."

Friday's matchup will take place in Ames in Hilton Coliseum, a venue where the Hawkeyes haven't won since 2003. The series is tied 16-16 since 1983 and the home team has come away victorious in 9-of-10 meetings.

"It's going to be an unbelievable atmosphere," said McCaffery of Hilton. "It was like that two years ago when we went over there, but our guys are used to that."





"You want to play in games that mean a lot to a lot of people, and this game means a lot to a lot of people. It's an important game. It's why you work so hard. It's an opportunity you cherish, you'll remember, you want to play and prepare your best, and that's what we'll try to do."
UI head coach Fran McCaffery


McCaffery says the Hawkeyes will need to avoid mistakes, especially those that lead to easy baskets, if they are to prevail Friday.

"You have to take care of the ball," he said. "You can't throw the ball away. If you do, with their speed and quickness, that is going to lead to layups. It's hard enough to stop them from scoring, if you give them layups, it's going to be tough to win."

The Cyclones enter the annual Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series matchup with an undefeated 7-0 record -- five of those wins came in Ames. Iowa State is one of the highest scoring teams nationally, averaging 91.7 points per game and five Cyclones average in double figures, led by forward Melvin Ejim's 18 points.

"Iowa State is very good, and they're good for a lot of reasons," said McCaffery. "They have a lot of weapons who can score, they take care of the ball and they don't turn it over. They have a good blend of experience and some young guys that are playing well. They're playing together and with a lot of confidence."

Marshall transfer DeAndre Kane has been a stat sheet stuffer for the Cyclones. The point guard is the only player nationally averaging more than 15 points, eight rebounds and five assists per game.

"He's a good player who can do a lot of things," said McCaffery. "He can score, post, play more than one position, have the ball, has great vision, finds people and plays at a great pace. He affects the game when he's out there."

McCaffery says the Hawkeyes will need to be mentally tough when they enter sold-out Hilton Coliseum with a hostile environment featuring 14,384 fans.

"When it's loud, sometimes the games are more physical," he said. "You don't hear a lot of things. You have to play through it and try to not let it affect you."

McCaffery says junior guard Josh Oglesby is doubtful for Friday's game, but he's getting closer to being ready.

"Josh is working hard," said McCaffery. "He's getting closer. We have to be careful how hard we push him now and make sure he doesn't have a setback. He's progressing just like we would like him to."

Friday's game is set for an 8:40 a.m. (CT) tipoff, and the game will be televised live on ESPNU with Mike Couzens and Reid Gettys calling the action.

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