Dec. 30, 2004
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Iowa (11-1) hosts Saint Louis (2-9) as the Hawkeyes close the non-conference portion of the season. Game time is 7:05 p.m. in Carver-Hawkeye Arena (15,500).
Iowa defeated Air Force 73-63 Tuesday evening, while Saint Louis lost to Southeast Missouri State 65-49 Wednesday in St. Louis.
ON THE AIR
Radio: Iowa games are broadcast on the Hawkeye Radio Network. Gary Dolphin handles the play-by-play with color commentator Bob Hansen.
Television: ESPN Regional will carry the game to a network of stations that includes KGAN Cedar Rapids, KDSM Des Moines, KCAU Sioux City, KYOU Ottumwa, KWQC Quad Cities and Charter Communications in St. Louis. Larry Morgan and Mac McCausland will call the action.
Iowa has played 2,322 games since beginning basketball in 1902. Overall Iowa’s record is 1,386-935 (.597). That includes an 865-303 (.741) record in home games, a 521-633 (.451) record in games away from Iowa City, a 657-644 (.505) mark in Big Ten games and a 271-77 (.779) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
IOWA IN CARVER-HAWKEYE ARENA
Iowa has compiled a 271-77 (.779) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Iowa is 127-64 (.665) in Big Ten games and 144-13 (.917) in non-Big Ten games. Iowa has drawn over five million fans for men’s basketball games since the arena opened in 1983. Iowa has posted a 63-22 (.741) home record under Coach Steve Alford, including a 41-4 (.917) mark in non-conference home games.
IN THE RANKINGS
Iowa is ranked 16th by the Associated Press and the Hawkeyes are 18th in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll. Iowa began the season receiving no votes in either poll. The Hawkeyes are eighth in the RPI rankings and 15th in the Sagarin Ratings.
IOWA OFF TO FAST START
With 11 wins in 12 games, Iowa has its best start of a season in six years under Coach Steve Alford. Iowa, in 2001, posted a 10-1 mark to start the season and ended the year with a 23-12 overall record. Iowa began the 1998-99 season with a 13-1 record.
The current eight-game win streak is the second longest for an Iowa team under Alford, as the Hawkeyes opened the 2000-01 season with nine straight wins. The Hawkeyes had six-game win streaks in 2003-04 and 2001-02.
Iowa has now won as many as 11 non-conference games (not including post-season wins) seven times since earning 12 non-conference victories during the 1988-89 season.
RECOGNITION ON THE NET
Iowa’s basketball program is being well recognized on the internet for its 11-1 start.
? On espn.com, ESPN analyst Dick Vitale has picked the Hawkeyes as his “Team of the Week” for their 83-53 win over Texas Tech.
? CollegeInsiders.com selected sophomore guard Adam Haluska as its “Star of the Week” for his play in the win over Texas Tech. Haluska matched his career high with 21 points, hitting 7-9 field goals, 3-3 three-pointers and 4-5 free throws.
? Gregg Doyel, writing for cbssportline.com a week ago, featured the Iowa guard court of Jeff Horner, Peirre Pierce and Adam Haluska as one of the best in the nation.
ALFORD REACHES 100 WINS AT IOWA
Coach Steve Alford collected win No. 100 as Iowa’s coach with the 73-63 victory over Air Force. Career victory number 250 came in the 88-53 win over Centenary. His career mark stands at 256-149. Alford is 100-72 at Iowa, moving into fifth place on the Iowa list for coaching victories. Iowa’s top four coaches in career wins include Tom Davis (269), Lute Olson (168), Rollie Williams (139) and Bucky O’Connor (114).
SLU COACH BRAD SODERBERG
Brad Soderberg is in his third season as the Saint Louis head coach and his 11th season as a college head coach. He served as a Billiken assistant for one season. Soderberg was the head coach at Wisconsin for one season before joining the staff at Saint Louis. Soderberg is 37-36 in two seasons at Saint Louis and his career record stands at 168-109.
He was the head coach at Loras College in Dubuque for five seasons (1989-93), posting a 79-45 record there. He was 36-18 in two years (1994-95) as the head coach at South Dakota State. Soderberg was an assistant coach at Wisconsin from 1996-00 before leading the Badgers to a 16-10 record as the Wisconsin head coach in 2000-01. Soderberg was also an assistant coach at Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Colorado State, Fort Hays State and Loras before moving into the head coaching ranks.
Soderberg is 3-0 vs. Iowa and Hawkeye Coach Steve Alford.
THE COACHES ARE NO STRANGERS
Iowa Coach Steve Alford and SLU Coach Brad Soderberg are no strangers. Along with meeting as head coaches in the NIT last season, they met twice during the 2000-01 season when Alford was at Iowa and Soderberg at Wisconsin, and they met in previous coaching positions.
Alford’s Southwest Missouri State team defeated Wisconsin in the 1999 NCAA Tournament when Soderberg was a Badger assistant. Iowa and Wisconsin split two games in 1999-00 when Alford was in his first year as the Hawkeye head coach at Soderberg was a Badger assistant and Soderberg led Wisconsin to two wins over Iowa during the 2000-01 season. Overall, Wisconsin won five of nine games against Iowa when Soderberg was a Badger assistant coach.
Iowa holds a 9-7 advantage in the series that began with a 35-19 Iowa win in 1926. Saint Louis won the only meeting last season, taking a last-second 70-69 win in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament. Iowa defeated the Billikens during the 2000-01 season, taking a 68-56 win in the consolation game of the Rainbow Classic in Hawaii. Iowa holds a 5-3 advantage in games played in Iowa City and the Billikens are 3-1 vs. Iowa in games played in St. Louis. The NIT game last season was played in St. Charles, MO and Iowa will play at Saint Louis next season.
Three of the last four meetings have taken place at neutral sites. Along with Iowa winning in Honolulu in 2000-01, Iowa defeated Saint Louis 83-80 in the semi-finals of the Chaminade Classic in December, 1988 and the Hawkeyes defeated Saint Louis 80-77 in overtime in the championship game of the Los Angeles Classic in December, 1967.
Iowa’s loss at Saint Louis last season marked Iowa’s first game in St. Louis since a 65-58 loss there in December, 1962.
THE LAST MEETING
Saint Louis scored on a three-point basket as time expired to take a 70-69 win over Iowa in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament. Iowa’s Pierre Pierce had given the Hawkeyes a 69-67 advantage with 4.4 seconds remaining, and Saint Louis had no timeout remaining to set up a final play. But, the clock was not stopped following Iowa’s final score, giving the Billikens time to regroup as the officials decided how much time actually remained. When play resumed with five seconds on the clock, SLU’s Anthony Drejaj hit a three-pointer from the right corner for the win.
Iowa started fast after Saint Louis scored the initial basket of the game. The Hawkeyes scored 10 straight points for a 10-2 advantage and Iowa built the margin to a 29-11 advantage with nine minutes remaining in the half. Saint Louis closed the gap before Iowa led 35-26 at halftime.
Iowa still led by 12 points, 50-38, with 13 minutes remaining, when the Billikens scored six straight points to cut the margin in half. Saint Louis finally evened the score at 63-63 with 2:09 remaining. Greg Brunner and Pierce added baskets to give Iowa a 67-63 advantage before two free throws by Saint Louis forced the final tie at 67-67 with 23 seconds to play. From there Iowa ran the clock down before Pierce drove down the lane for Iowa’s final basket.
Iowa shot 53.2% from the field in the game, including 65.2% in the final 20 minutes. Iowa also made 17-20 free throws (85%) and won the rebounding battle by a 39-22 margin. Saint Louis shot 61.5% in the second half to raise its percentage to 42.4% for the game, but the Billikens had just six turnovers while Iowa had 18.
Jeff Horner led Iowa’s balanced scoring with 17 points, while Pierce added 16 and Brunner and Glen Worley each scored 10. Worley led Iowa’s rebounding with nine, while Horner had eight and Brunner and Pierce six each. Drejaj led Saint Louis with 23 points while Chris Sloan added 16 points, six rebounds and five assists.
IOWA VS. SAINT LOUIS NOTES
? Saint Louis, like Iowa, has played a demanding schedule. The nine teams that have defeated the Billikens began the week with a combined record of 59-26 (.694).
? Iowa is 34-24 all-time against current Conference USA members, including a 1-0 mark this season. Iowa defeated Louisville 76-71 in the first round of the EA Sports Maui Invitational. Iowa has played 12 of the 14 current members, having not played East Carolina or Tulane.
? Conference USA placed six teams in the NCAA Tournament a year ago, compared to three for the Big Ten Conference.
? Louisville is the only common opponent Iowa and Saint Louis played last season. Iowa defeated the Cardinals 70-69 in overtime in the Wooden Tradition, while Louisville scored a 75-48 win at Saint Louis on March 3.
? Both Iowa and Saint Louis have been in the NIT each of the last two seasons. Iowa won two games in 2003 before a loss to Georgia Tech, while Saint Louis lost in the first round to Minnesota. Last season Saint Louis defeated Iowa in the first round before a 77-66 loss at Notre Dame in the second round.
? Saint Louis assistant Angres Thorpe was an assistant coach at Loras College in Dubuque from 1993-96.
? Tony Breitbach, director of Sports Medicine at Saint Louis, is a native of Dubuque, IA and a graduate of the University of Iowa, where he was a student athletic trainer.
? Saint Louis freshman Bryce Husak is a native of Mt. Vernon, IA. The 7-0 center is in his first year of action after a redshirt season in 2003-04.
HAWKEYE JUST MISS SHOOTING RECORD
In the 73-63 win over Air Force, Iowa connected on 67.5% (27-40) of its field goal attempts, the second best shooting performance ever for an Iowa team.
The school record for field goal percentage is 69.8% (37-53), set on Nov. 30, 1986 in a 103-80 win over Northeastern in the championship game of the Great Alaska Shootout.
Iowa’s previous best field goal percentage under Steve Alford came in a 70-60 win at Northwestern on Jan. 9, 2002 when the Hawkeyes shot 60% (27-45) from the field.
IOWA STOPS AIR FORCE
Iowa used a solid shooting performance and a strong defense to take a 73-63 win over Air Force Tuesday evening, winning its seventh home game of the season.
Iowa Started slowly, leading by just 15-11 with six minutes left in the first half. The Hawkeyes took control from there, building the advantage to 29-17 by intermission.
Iowa scored the first eight points of the second half and made eight of its first nine shots in the period to take full control. The Hawkeyes led by as many as 24 points on three occasions, the last at 61-37 with just under seven minutes remaining.
The Hawkeyes shot 75% (15-20) from the field in the second half and 67.5% for the game, the second best shooting night in school history. The Iowa defense was outstanding through the first 34 minutes of the contest. Air Force shot just 30% from the field in the first half before warming up in the final 10 minutes. For the game the Falcons shot 43.4%, but made just 14-36 three-point attempts and attempted just four free throws.
Iowa won the rebounding battle by a 32-18 margin and scored 73 points against a team that had allowed just 49 points per game in its first 10 games.
Pierre Pierce had another outstanding all-around game to lead Iowa. Pierce had 19 points (9-13 FGs), seven rebounds, six assists and three steals. Greg Brunner added 17 points and nine rebounds, Adam Haluska had 14 points and Jeff Horner added seven points, five rebounds and three assists.
SAINT LOUIS FALLS AT SOUTHERN
Cold shooting against a tough opponent on the road led Saint Louis to a 67-41 loss at Southern Illinois Dec. 21. The Billikens shot just 38.1% from the field in the contest, along with making just 3-10 three-point attempts and 6-12 free throws.
Southern jumped to a 34-21 advantage at halftime and help Saint Louis to just 20 points in the second half. Saint Louis was guilty of 21 turnovers. The Billikens were led by center Tom Frericks with seven points, while reserve Vas’Shun Newborne added five rebounds.
HAWKEYES AMONG LEADERS
Iowa ranks 10th in the nation in assists per game (18.2) and blocked shots per game (6.3), 12th in three-point field goal percentage (41.8%), 18th in winning percentage (.917) and 19th in scoring (82.2).
Individually, Erek Hansen is third in blocked shots (3.6) and Jeff Horner is 15th in assists per game (6.3) and 21st in three-pointers per game (2.8).
HAWKEYES ADD TO THE ROSTER
Ryan Kennedy (6-7, 210) is a sophomore forward who has joined the Iowa basketball team as a walk-on. Kennedy attended Roosevelt High School in Des Moines as a prep.
Kennedy earned honorable mention all-conference recognition as a prep senior, serving as team captain and earning team MVP honors.
NO TREYS ALLOWED
In the 70-63 win over Iowa State, Iowa held the Cyclones without a three-point basket as ISU missed all six of its attempts. That marks the first time an Iowa opponent did not make at least one three-point basket since early in the 2001-02 season, when Iowa State missed all eight of its three-point attempts in a 78-53 loss to Iowa in Ames.
HAWKEYES SET TOURNEY RECORDS
As a team, Iowa set two Gazette Hawkeye Challenge tournament records and tied a third, in the win over UNC Greensboro. The Hawkeyes set a tournament record and tied their own school record with 12 blocked shots. That record was set earlier this season in a loss to North Carolina. Iowa also shot 57.9% (11-19) from three-point range to set a tournament record and the 11 three-point field goals tied a tournament mark.
HAWKEYES SET BLOCK RECORD
Iowa set its second single-game record of the season in a loss to North Carolina and tied that record in a win over North Carolina-Greensboro. The Hawkeyes blocked 12 shots in each of those two games, and junior center Erek Hansen led the way in both games with five each. The previous record of 11 blocked shots was set in an 80-65 win at Drake on Jan. 4, 1993.
IOWA SETS FREE THROW MARK
Iowa set school and Carver-Hawkeye Arena records in its opening win over Western Illinois by making all 20 of its free throw attempts. Six Hawkeyes contributed to the record, with Pierre Pierce and Erek Hansen each making four.
The previous best for a perfect free throw percentage (18-18) came in a win at Indiana in 1979. The previous record for Carver-Hawkeye Arena was 94.7%, when Iowa made 18-19 attempts vs. Wisconsin in 2001.
NEW FACES CONTRIBUTE EARLY
Several new faces have been big contributors in Iowa’s first 12 games. The newcomers are averaging 24.4 points and 12.3 rebounds per outing.
Junior college transfer Doug Thomas scored 14 points and led Iowa with nine rebounds in the opening win over Western Illinois, and he added 10 rebounds vs. UNC Greensboro. Thomas added eight points and five rebounds vs. North Carolina and he had six rebounds in the win over Texas. Sophomore Adam Haluska has scored in double figures in nine of 12 games, including a career-high 21 points vs. Drake and Texas Tech 20 in a home win over Iowa State.
In the win at Drake, freshman Carlton Reed scored 14 points, while freshman Alex Thompson five rebounds in the win over Texas Tech.
Newcomers contributed 31 points and 13 rebounds in the opening win, 37 points and 11 rebounds vs. North Carolina, 39 points and 15 rebounds in the win at Drake, 22 points and 15 rebounds vs. Centenary and 27 points and 19 rebounds vs. UNC Greensboro.
ANOTHER STRONG SCHEDULE
As has been the case in recent years, the Iowa schedule is very demanding. Seven of Iowa’s first 12 games have been against teams that advanced to post-season play a year ago. Iowa has posted a 6-1 record in those games, including a 5-1 record vs. teams that were in the 2004 NCAA Tournament. Saint Louis was also in post-season play last year, defeating Iowa in the first round of the NIT before a second round loss to Notre Dame.
Iowa took part in the EA Sports Maui Invitational early in the season, defeating #11 Louisville and #13 Texas, while falling to #11 North Carolina. The non-conference slate so far has also included Northern Iowa, Iowa State, Texas Tech and Air Force, teams that participated in post-season play a year ago.
Iowa will play 16 games against teams that advanced to post-season play a year ago.
TWO STRAIGHT OVER RANKED TEAMS
Iowa’s back-to-back wins over Louisville and Texas marks the second time Iowa has won consecutive games against ranked opponents under Coach Steve Alford. The Hawkeyes, during the 2002-03 season, defeated 20th-ranked Michigan State 68-64 and 8th-ranked Illinois 68-61.
IOWA VS. RANKED FOES
Steve Alford has posted a 17-24 record against ranked opponents as Iowa’s head coach. Iowa, this season, has defeated 11th-ranked Louisville 76-71 and 13th-ranked Texas 82-80, with a loss to 11th-ranked North Carolina. Those three games were at the Maui Invitational.
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), 2nd-ranked Missouri (83-65 in 2001-02), 5th-ranked Ohio State (67-64 in 1999-00), 7th-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 top-ranked (Duke, 2001-02), once to 3rd-ranked (Illinois, 2000-01), twice to 4th-ranked (Michigan State, 1999-00 and 2000-01), twice to 5th-ranked (Tennessee, 2000-01 and Missouri, 2001-02), once to 9th-ranked (Kentucky, 2000-01) and once to 10th-ranked (Illinois, 2002).
In the 41 games against ranked teams, Alford and his Iowa team are 6-7 in home games, 8-8 at neutral sites and 3-9 when playing ranked teams in their home arena.
HORNER OFF TO FAST START
Junior guard Jeff Horner is off to a fast start through 12 games, ranking among national leaders in assists and three-point field goals while averaging 14.9 points per game. He leads the Big Ten in three categories and ranks among the top eight players in seven categories. Horner is averaging 6.3 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game. He had a career-high 27 points in the win over Texas and he led the Maui Invitational in scoring with 63 points.
Horner made 15-23 three-point attempts in the three games in Hawaii, moving into Iowa’s top 10 in both three-pointers and three-point attempts. Horner was named Big Ten Player of the Week for his play in Maui. The honor is the second of Horner’s career, as he earned it last Feb. 9 after leading Iowa to a double-overtime win at Indiana.
He added his first career scoring and assist double-double in the win over UNC Greensboro with 14 points and a career-best 11 assists. He added 16 points and nine rebounds in the win over Northern Iowa. Horner scored Iowa’s final five points in the last 95 seconds against the Panthers and he added 12 points and seven assists in a win over Iowa State. Horner was named to the all-tournament team at the Maui Invitational and he was co-MVP (along with teammate Pierre Pierce) of Iowa’s Gazette Hawkeye Challenge.
PIERCE WELL BALANCED
Junior guard Pierre Pierce is proving to be a very versatile player through Iowa’s first 12 games. Pierce is averaging 16.5 points, 4.3 assists and 5.7 rebounds per game and he leads the team with 33 steals. He has scored in double figures in all 12 games, has at least six assists in five games and five or more rebounds in nine games.
Pierce made a three-point basket in the final minute to lead Iowa in a win over Texas, scoring 18 points vs. the Longhorns and 16 points vs. Louisville in Iowa’s first two games of the Maui Invitational. Pierce was named co-MVP (along with teammate Jeff Horner) of Iowa’s Gazette Hawkeye Challenge.
BRUNNER WORKING THE BOARDS
Junior forward Greg Brunner is Iowa’s top returning rebounder and he is averaging 7.3 rebounds this season. Brunner, who ranked second in the Big Ten in rebounding last season, had a season-best 13 rebounds in the win over Iowa State and 11 vs. Western Carolina. He had 10 rebounds vs. Louisville, nine vs. UNC Greensboro and Air Force and eight in wins over Texas and Texas Tech. Brunner has scored in double figures in 10 games, with a season-high of 23 in the win over Northern Iowa. He is shooting 55.1% from the field and 69.8% from the foul line. He was named to the all-tournament team of Iowa’s Gazette Hawkeye Challenge.
HALUSKA HITS NEW HIGH
Sophomore Adam Haluska scored a career-high 21 points in wins over Texas Tech and Drake as he has scored in double figures in 10 of 12 games. Playing against his former school, he added 20 points in a win over Iowa State, hitting 4-8 treys. Haluska had 19 points in the loss to North Carolina and 17 points vs. UNC Greensboro. He matched his career-high of four assists in the win over Northern Iowa and played an outstanding defensive game.
In his first season at Iowa, Haluska is shooting 50.5% from the field and 82% from the free throw line while averaging 13.8 points and 3.8 rebounds per game.
THOMAS HELPS ON THE GLASS
Junior Doug Thomas is making a major contribution to Iowa’s rebounding efforts, as he is fourth on the team with an average of 4.7 per game. Thomas had nine rebounds in his first game as a Hawkeye and added a season-best 10 in a win over UNC Greensboro. Thomas had six points and six rebounds in the win over Texas Tech. Thomas is averaging 4.4 points while shooting 57.6% from the field and 75% from the foul line.
Iowa has three players, all juniors, who could reach the 1,000 point plateau this season. Pierre Pierce has scored 914 points, Jeff Horner has 811 and Greg Brunner has 707. Some notes on Iowa’s 1,000-Point Club include:
? 35 Hawkeye players have scored over 1,000 points, the most recent being Glen Worley last season
? The last Hawkeye to reach 1,000 points in three seasons was Dean Oliver in 2000
? Iowa has had three 1,000-point scorers on the roster in the same season on three occasions. Jess Settles, Kenyon Murray and Chris Kingsbury in 1996, Roy Marble, B.J. Armstrong and Jeff Moe in 1988 and Marble, Armstrong and Ed Horton in 1989
SCORING BY HALVES
Iowa has outscored its opponents 449-370 in the first half and 538-462 in the second half. Iowa has led at halftime in nine of 12 games and the Hawkeyes have outscored their opponent in the second half in nine games.
? Iowa’s contest at Drake was the only true road game for the Hawkeyes in non-conference play. Iowa played three neutral site games at the EA Sports Maui Invitational and played Texas Tech at the United Center in Chicago.
? Iowa has had four players or more score in double figures in nine of 12 games, with a season-best six players in the win over Western Illinois. Iowa is 1-0 when six players score in double figures, 1-0 when five players score 10 points or more, 6-1 when four reach double figures, 1-0 with three in double figures and 2-0 when two are in double figures.
? Iowa has four players averaging between 13.1 and 16.5 points per game and four players averaging between 4.7 and 7.3 rebounds per outing.
? Iowa is 9-0 when leading at halftime and 2-1 when trailing at intermission.
? Iowa is 6-1 when controlling the opening tip and 5-0 when not controlling the tip.
? Iowa is 5-0 in games decided by 10 points or less, and has not played an overtime game.
? Under Steve Alford, Iowa is 31-6 when shooting at least 50% from the field, including 6-1 this season.
? North Carolina and Northern Iowa are the only Iowa opponents to shoot over 50% from the field this season. Last season, Iowa was 0-5 when its opponent shot at least 50% from the field.
SEEKING FIVE STRAIGHT IN `05
Iowa is seeking a fifth straight winning season, a streak that would match the second longest consecutive winning seasons record in Iowa basketball history. Iowa’s longest streak of consecutive winning seasons is seven, from 1950 through 1956. Pops Harrison, Bucky O’Connor and Rollie Williams all coached the Hawkeyes during those years. Only a 10-10 record in 1949 kept Iowa from 13 consecutive winning seasons (1944-56).
Lute Olson coached Iowa to five straight winning seasons from 1979-83, George Raveling and Tom Davis combined to coach Iowa to winning seasons from 1985-89 and Davis coached Iowa to winning seasons from 1995-99.
TRI-CAPTAINS NAMED FOR 2005
Iowa’s tri-captains for the season include juniors Greg Brunner, Jeff Horner and Pierre Pierce. Pierce, a native of Westmont, IL, started all 29 games a year ago, leading the team in scoring (16.1) while averaging 5.7 rebounds per game. Brunner, a native of Charles City, started 26 of 29 games. His 8.2 rebounds per game were a team best and ranked second in the Big Ten. Horner, a Mason City native, has started all 69 games over the past three seasons. He led the team in assists in each of the last two seasons while also averaging 13 points and 5.3 rebounds last year.
NEWCOMERS GAIN ATTENTION
Iowa’s class of newcomers includes seven players. That list includes juniors Doug Thomas and Justin Wieck, sophomore Adam Haluska and freshmen J.R. Angle, Seth Gorney, Carlton Reed and Alex Thompson.
The group is ranked the second best incoming class in the Big Ten and 20th in the nation by Hoop Scoop in the June issue of Basketball Times. Street and Smith’s ranks the group as the top incoming class in the Big Ten and names Thompson on the all-Midwest team on its list of Top 100 Freshman.
Lindy’s rates the incoming class as 14th best nationally and lists Haluska fourth among its top 10 transfers.
Athlon Sport’s also lists Haluska among the top transfers in the nation and rates the overall class fourth best in the Big Ten.
THE RETURNING CAST
Iowa returns three starters and six lettermen from 2004. Those six returning lettermen last season scored over 1,200 points and totaled over 600 rebounds. The six players, in 2004, scored 60.1% of Iowa’s points, had 56.9% of the rebounds, 67.5% of the assists, 64.4% of the blocked shots and 45.2% of the steals.
The 14-man squad includes one senior, six juniors, three sophomores and four freshmen. The roster includes eight Iowans, plus one player from California, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Texas.
NOTES FROM A YEAR AGO
? Iowa is one of four Big Ten teams to post a winning season in each of the last four years, joining Illinois, Michigan State and Wisconsin. Iowa advanced to post-season play for the fourth straight season a year ago.
? Iowa’s 9-7 Big Ten record earned a fourth place finish in the conference race, a feat that was accomplished despite the fact that Iowa lost an average of 30 points and 17 rebounds from the team that posted a 9-4 record through its first 13 games of the season.
? Iowa collected four Big Ten road wins in 2004 and seven in the last two seasons. In Big Ten play, only Illinois (six) and Michigan State (five) won more road games a year ago as Iowa won at Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State and Minnesota. The Hawkeyes won three road games in 2003. Under Steve Alford, Iowa has won at least three Big Ten road games in three of five seasons.
? Iowa ranked second in the Big Ten, for all games, in five statistical categories, including scoring offense, field goal defense, three-point field goal percentage, rebounding margin and assists per game.
? Iowa’s single-game bests in 2003-04 included Pierre Pierce with 28 points vs. Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament, a career-high. Greg Brunner had 14 rebounds in the double-overtime win at Indiana, also a career-high. Jeff Horner had a then career-high nine assists in the win over Drake and 2004 Brody Boyd had seven steals in Iowa’s win over Northern Illinois.
HAWK TALK WITH Steve Alford
Fans of the University of Iowa basketball program may join Iowa Coach Steve Alford and radio announcer Gary Dolphin each week during the season for the “Hawk Talk with Steve Alford” radio call-in show. The show takes place each week at Carlos O’Kelly’s Mexican Café in Iowa City. The show airs from 6-7:30 p.m. on the following dates: Jan. 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; Feb. 7, 14, 21, 28; and Mar. 7.
IOWA ON THE TUBE
Every Iowa game throughout the 2004-05 will be televised. Iowa appeared on national cable television (ESPN and ESPN2) in three games in the Maui Invitational and the Dec. 21 game vs. Texas Tech was a national cable telecast on ESPN2. Iowa games not selected for national coverage will be televised regionally by ESPN Plus, while several conference games are scheduled to be carried throughout the Big Ten Conference viewing area as part of the Big Ten regional network agreement with ESPN Plus.
Iowa opens Big Ten play Jan. 5, hosting Michigan at 8:05 p.m. The Hawkeyes travel to Ohio State Jan. 8 (11:07 a.m. CT) and host Minnesota Jan. 15 at 1:32 p.m.