||Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013
The last leg of the team's journey was today, as the Hawkeyes left Marseilles and arrived in Monaco around 1 p.m. What a place to end our tour. Monaco has spectacular views of the sea, and incredible buildings, cars, and yachts around the harbor. We had a little more than two hours of free time to walk around and get a taste of Monaco. It would have been nice to spend an entire day or two there, but having the opportunity to visit such a place is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The team has now arrived in Nice, where it will enjoy a farewell dinner to France and then prepare for its long journey back to Iowa City Thursday morning.
We hope you all have enjoyed following along with the team on this blog. Going 5-1, while also spending quality time with teammates and staff has been a real treat. Hard to believe official practice starts in almost a month.
||Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013
We are coming down to the final stretch of our European tour. Today is our last day in Marseilles before we head east tomorrow for a day in Nice.
The team had a free day today to do as they please. The weather here is absolutely gorgeous, upper 80s and plenty of sunshine.
We play our sixth game in eight days tonight. Our game is about an hour drive from our hotel and tips off at 7:30 p.m. local (12:30 p.m. CT). The team has done a nice job preparing for each game when we arrive at the gymnasiums.
Follow @IowaHoops during the game for score and stat updates.
||Monday, Aug. 19, 2013
Today, the Hawkeyes enjoyed a scenic view of the Marseilles coastline along the Mediterranean Sea on a 2+ hour boat cruise. The views were spectacular and the weather was perfect. Being able to experience opportunities like this with teammates and coaches has been memorable.
We are back at the hotel now preparing for tonight's game. We tipoff at 6 p.m. local time, which is 11 a.m. (CT).
Be sure to check out today's photo gallery, as well as others from this trip, by clicking on the links on the right. Also, check out @IowaHoops on Instagram and Twitter for bonus material.
Game updates from today's game will be tweeted @IowaHoops during the game, while stats, recap and video interviews will be posted later today after the game.
Bonjour from Marseilles!
||Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013
After last night's win, the team got a good nights rest and departed for Marseilles at 10:30 a.m. The train ride was a smooth one, non-stop through the France countryside until we reached the water.
Today was as relaxed and unstructured as we have had on this trip. Once we arrived at the hotel in the afternoon we all had free time to do as we pleased the remainder of the day. Some of the players checked out the pool and beach, while others just checked out the local flavor along the marina.
Tomorrow, the team will set out for a local cruise along the shoreline of the Mediterranean Sea before preparing for its fifth game of the trip. Monday's game tips off at 6 pm local (11 am CT). So be sure to have your twitter timelines open at work to keep updated on the game status with exclusive twitter updates @IowaHoops.
Hope everyone back home enjoyed a fun and safe weekend.
What's up Hawk Fans...
||Saturday, Aug. 17, 2013
This morning we managed to leave the hotel at around 10 a.m. to travel to the Palace of Versailles. Saying the palace is gorgeous would be an understatement. The palace is the largest in the world and its property covers 25 square miles. I think the most amazing thing about the buildings we see is imagining how they built these massive structures hundreds of years ago. We walked around inside with a tour guide for about an hour and a half and saw centuries of king's bedrooms, famous paintings, and many other ancient artifacts. Almost everything in there is still original and not replicas.
After we got back from the Palace, we got a few hours to rest before our pre-game meal. I'm pretty sure most of us slept during that time. The combinations of the time change, touring, and playing games is very exhausting. I am still unable to play because of my hand but I am still excited for our second game in Paris tonight. As a team we played really well last night, which is awesome to see in August already. We also got to meet a couple Hawk fans before last night's game and take a picture with them. They were great people, as all Hawk fans are!
Pre-game meal went well. Overall, I think the food is a lot better in America, but it was still good. The language barrier makes it tough to order sometimes and makes for some pretty funny situations, but the local people are very nice and understanding. In my opinion, we have the funniest team in the nation and it would be impossible to describe all the funny moments that happen, but the moment of the day was Whitey trying to put his plate of spaghetti in a to go box and instead dumping the entire thing on his lap/floor.
We now have about an hour and a half to relax before we leave to our game tonight to get another W. We are having a great time over here and appreciate all the support you guys continue to give from hundreds of miles away.
Another phenomenal day in Paris. After a long and fun day of traveling and sightseeing yesterday, the Hawkeyes slept in this morning and then did some more sightseeing at the Sacré-Coeur Basilica and surrounding area. Some others then visited the Louvre, which is a huge art gallery housed in an old Parisian palace. The Louvre is a place you could spent two days looking at all the majestic pieces of history... our two hours was 1:45 more than the Griswalds.
||Friday, Aug. 16, 2013
Pregame meal is in the books and the team is now getting into game mode for their third game of this European tour. A late start tonight at 8:30 p.m. local, which is 1:30 p.m. back in Iowa.
Get real time updates of the trip via Twitter and Instagram @IowaHoops.
The Hawkeyes have arrived in Paris, France!
||Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013
What's up Hawk Fans!
Today was a long but exciting day as we finally started our trip to Paris. We had the opportunity to ride the rail from London to Paris and the train was going about 200 mph, which is pretty crazy to think about ! We arrived early in the morning and the city of Paris is so beautiful. We were lucky enough to see all types of cafes, stores, and historic buildings on Champs-Élysées and on our way around the city.
For lunch we ate at a Cafe right down the street from our hotel and they had the best lasagna I've ever tasted (of course my mothers is still the best). In the late afternoon, our team took a river tour and got to see the cathedral of Notre Dame. On the tour we learned the history of Paris and also got the whole boat to sing Happy Birthday to Anthony Clemmons.
We finished off the night by visiting the Eiffel Tower and arrived just in time to see the lights sparkle off of the tower which was a beautiful sight! We also got the chance to oversee the city on the tower, which was a magnificent sight to see! It was breathtaking to see all of Paris and it is something that I will never forget.
We have a big day ahead tomorrow as we get to sight see more of Paris and have a big game later in the evening. We appreciate all the support you fans are giving us in Europe. That's why you are the best fans in the world. Goodnight and Go Hawks.
||Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013
Our last full day in London was very eventful. We woke up early and had an 8:30 a.m. breakfast. We departed the hotel around 9:15 a.m. on the bus, which took us to the London Eye. The London Eye is a giant Ferris wheel which has 32 pods that fully rotates and shows those people inside the pods a great view of London. Each pod contains space for 25 people so we all managed to fit on. A few members of our group were nervous before going on, but everyone was glad they decided to go. We all took some great pictures and had a lot of fun.
An hour passed and we were ready for our second tour of the day. We all gathered together and made our way closer to the River Thames for our boat tour. We sat on the lower levels but still managed to get a great view of all the landmarks we had seen but from a different angle. This was new for me as I'd never been on a tour of the Thames, so I enjoyed this very much.
We headed back to the hotel and had some time to chill and relax before we met up later in the afternoon for our pre-game meal. Following this team meal we headed back to the hotel for about an hour to get prepared for our game against the London Lions this evening.
Tonight is going to be very special for me. I never thought I'd be able to play with my teammates in front of so many of my friends and family. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I'm truly grateful for everyone who made this trip back home for me possible.
||Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013
While the team is in London for this part of our European tour I've been asked to write a short blog of what we've been up to and how special this trip is for me.
First, I'd like to thank all the Hawkeye fans for their continued support of our team. Even when we travel to different parts of the world the fans still contact us and wish us well, which is fantastic.
We have visited Trafalgar Square, Leicester Square, Covent Garden and other spots around London the last couple days. We learnt a lot about the history of London from our tour guides, which we all enjoyed.
Last night we made our way to a local restaurant for a welcome dinner. Our entire team came including the coaches, their family members and all of our support staff. It was a great experience as my teammates were enjoying similar food as they do in the U.S., but remarked on how different things tasted. We left quite early as people wanted to go back to the hotel to rest up. A few members of the team decided to walk around and see more of West London while the rest just relaxed at the hotel for the rest of the night.
We are excited to play our first game tonight. It will be a dream come true having my family watch me play in person for the Hawkeyes. Tomorrow's night's game is officially sold out, so the atmosphere at the Copper Box will be special.
Tomorrow before our second game, we will go on the London Eye, which is a giant Ferris wheel that overlooks the city and take a cruise down the Thames.
The team's flight from Chicago to London was pretty much a smooth one. Every seat had its own personal entertainment system, which included movies, TV shows, video games, music, etc. The Hawkeyes touched down in England around 10 a.m. local time (4 a.m. CT). It took about 30 minutes for everyone to get through customs and then the team had a nice surprise, being greeted by Gabriel Olaseni's family. The London native's parents and siblings were thrilled to see Gabe and the entire team. It is incredible how almost identical Gabe and his younger brother look.
||Monday, Aug. 12, 2013
The team then checked into the hotel, grabbed a late breakfast and headed out for a tour of some of the sights of downtown London. The main areas of attractions on Monday were Trafalgar Square, which we were told by our tour guide is the U.S. equivalent to Times Square, and photos near Big Ben. The sun popped out occasionally, but it was a mostly cloudy afternoon, with a cool breeze during the tour.
The team is looking forward to a nice welcome dinner tonight before crashing early to catch up on some zzzzz's and get their bodies accustomed to the six-hour time difference.
The team gets to sleep in tomorrow before embarking around 10 a.m. on another brief tour around London. The Hawkeyes will hit the hardwood tomorrow night against the London Lions in a closed-door game. We'll have a postgame recap on hawkeyesports.com after the game.
And as always, follow the team's updates in real time via @IowaHoops on Twitter and Instagram.
||Sunday, August 11, 2013
The team met its first challenge before the trip even began... making sure their individual luggage fit under the 50-pound limit. After some players and staff made the necessary adjustments the team was on their way, via bus from Iowa City to Chicago departing around 1 pm.
After a smooth bus ride, the Hawkeyes arrived at O'Hare at 4:30 pm, about 3+ hours before their red-eye flight from Chicago to London. Thankfully most of the players will have an aisle seat, which provides a little extra leg room. Freshman Peter Jok looks to have the most energy of the bunch right now, having a hard time sitting still in the airport.
Our flight looks to be on time, knock on wood. We will catch up with everyone on the other side of the pond on Monday!