Alford's Squad Looks For Another

Jan. 16, 2004

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Iowa (9-4, 2-1) visits Illinois (10-4, 1-2) Saturday, Jan. 17 in its second of three straight road games. Game time is 11:05 a.m. at Assembly Hall (16,500). Iowa defeated Minnesota 83-68 Tuesday in Minneapolis. Illinois lost to Northwestern 70-60 Wednesday in Evanston. .

Radio: Iowa games are broadcast on the Hawkeye Radio Network. Gary Dolphin handles the play-by-play with color commentator Bob Hansen. Television: ESPN will carry the game to a national cable audience. Dave Barnett, Tim McCormick and Steve Lavin will call the action. .

Iowa has played 2,294 games since beginning basketball in 1902. Overall Iowa’s record is 1,368-926 (.596). That includes an 854-301 (.739) record in home games, a 514-625 (.451) record in games away from Iowa City, a 650-638 (.505) mark in Big Ten games and a 260-75 (.776) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. .

With the 71-61 win over 24th-ranked Purdue, Steve Alford has posted a 15-20 record against ranked opponents as Iowa’s head coach, including a 5-2 mark in Iowa’s last seven games against ranked foes and a 2-1 mark in 2003-04. Iowa this season defeated 16th-ranked Louisville 70-69 in overtime and lost at 22nd-ranked Missouri, 76-56. .

Alford’s Hawkeye teams are 5-8 when playing teams ranked in the top 10, including wins over top-ranked Connecticut (70-68 in 1999-00), second-ranked Missouri (83-65 in 2001-02), fifth-ranked Ohio State (67-64 in 1999-00), seventh-ranked Illinois (78-62 in 2000-01) and 8th-ranked Illinois (68-61 in 2002-03). The eight losses to top 10 teams have been once to No. 1 (Duke, 2001-02), once to No. 3 (Illinois, 2000-01), twice to No. 4 (Michigan State, 1999-00 and 2000-01), twice to No. 5 (Tennessee, 2000-01 and Missouri, 2001-02), once to No. 9 (Kentucky, 2000-01) and once to No. 10 (Illinois, 2002). .

In the 35 games against ranked teams, Alford and his Iowa team are 6-5 in home games, 6-7 at neutral sites and 3-8 when playing ranked teams in their home arena. .

Illinois holds a 68-64 advantage in the series that began with a 46-36 Iowa win in 1908. The teams met just once in each of the past two seasons, with Illinois taking a 77-66 win in Champaign in 2002 and Iowa winning 68-61 in Iowa City on 1/15/03. The Illini have won four of the last six meetings after Iowa swept both games during the 1999 season. .

Illinois holds a 53-14 advantage in games played in Champaign, where the Illini have won three straight over Iowa and 14 of the last 15 meetings. Iowa’s last win at Assembly Hall came by a 78-72 margin during the 1998-99 season. The teams meet Feb. 25 in Iowa City. .

Iowa won its third straight Big Ten game last Jan. 15 with a 68-61 win over 8th-ranked Illinois in Iowa City. The Hawkeyes never trailed in the game and the Illini were never closer than five points in the last five minutes. Iowa held the top scoring team in the league to its lowest point total of the season, as Illinois shot just 40% from the field, including 21.1% (4-19) from three-point range. The Hawkeye defense also forced 17 turnovers and the Hawkeyes outscored Illinois 24-13 from the free throw line.

Iowa took the lead early and led by as many as eight points in the first eight minutes. Iowa maintained the advantage in the second half before Illinois closed to within two points with 7:08 remaining. Iowa responded by scoring the next five points and the Hawkeyes led by at least five the rest of the way. Iowa shot 42% from the field and 68.6% (24-35) from the free throw line, while Illinois won the rebounding battle by a 39-35 margin.

Guard Jeff Horner led Iowa, recording his first career double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Horner also added five assists and four steals, to go with just two turnovers in 35 minutes. Brody Body matched his season scoring high with 13 points and Chauncey Leslie added 11 points and six rebounds. Glen Worley had eight points and seven rebounds and Sean Sonderleiter added nine points. Illinois was led by Brian Cook with 20 points and 12 rebounds, while Luther Head added 13 points and Dee Brown collected five assists.