Aug. 1, 2006
Jeff Horner, Iowa’s co-Most Valuable Player and career assist leader, has joined former teammate Greg Brunner in electing to begin his professional basketball career in Belgium.
Horner (6-3, 185) has signed a one year professional contract with Euphony Bree, a team located in Bree, Belgium. Euphony Bree competes in the same league as Pepinster, the team Brunner signed with last month. Horner will travel to Belgium in mid-August to begin preparing for his first professional season, which begins in late September. Bree and Pepinster are less than an hour apart and the teams compete in the same league.
“It’s a relief to sign and know I’ll be starting my professional career,” said Horner. “This team was second in the league last year, and this league allows a number of Americans on each team. I think this is a good situation for me and I’m anxious to get started. Having Greg close as well, hopefully we will have opportunities to get together when we’re homesick.”
“Having Jeff and Greg playing professionally so close together is something we are excited about,” said Iowa Coach Steve Alford. “Those two are such good friends, it will benefit both to be so close. I’m extremely happy for Jeff to get this opportunity to play professional basketball.
“Jeff has been a great team leader and a great representative of our program,” added Alford. “We knew we had a great person from the time he committed to the program. Jeff and Greg are both the exact type of people you want in your program. We have a great challenge ahead in replacing what they meant to our success.”
A Mason City native, Horner committed to Alford and the Iowa program as a ninth grader. Horner quickly moved into Iowa’s starting line-up and became a fixture as the Hawkeye point guard.
Horner ended his career as Iowa’s career assist leader (612) and ranks 11th in career scoring with 1,502 points. He is also Iowa’s career leader in three-point field goals (262) and attempts (713) and ranks in the top 10 in career steals (166).
Horner missed four games last December due to a knee injury, but recovered to have an outstanding Big Ten campaign. Horner led Iowa to a second place finish during the conference season and the Hawkeyes went on to win the Big Ten Tournament title.
Horner averaged 13.6 points, 4.1 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game as a senior. He was named the Most Valuable Player at the Big Ten tournament after earning third team honors during the season. He earned honorable mention all-America recognition from the Associated Press.
As a four-year starter Horner helped Iowa win 79 games in his career, winning over 20 games in both 2005 and 2006. The Hawkeyes advanced to post-season play each year of Horner’s career, including NCAA Tournament bids in 2005 and 2006.