Feb. 28, 2012
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|Game 30 | Iowa (15-14, 7-9) vs. Nebraska (12-15, 4-12)|
|Date||Wednesday, Feb. 29 | 8:05 p.m.|
|Location||Lincoln, Nebraska | Bob Devaney Sports Center|
|Radio||Hawkeye Radio Network|
|Live Coverage||GameTracker | Twitter Game Updates|
|All-Time Series||Iowa leads, 12-8|
? Iowa has posted four wins over RPI top 25 teams (Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin twice). Only Michigan State (six), Ohio State (five) and Michigan (five) have more.
? Iowa’s seven Big Ten wins are the most in a single season since collecting nine during the 2006-07 season.
? Iowa owns a +3.6 rebounding advantage in its seven Big Ten victories, while it has been outrebounded by 5.1 boards in its nine conference losses.
? Matt Gatens earned his first career Big Ten Player of the Week award Monday when he shared the honor with Purdue’s Robbie Hummel.
? Matt Gatens averaged 27.5 points, shooting 12-of-16 (.750) from 3-point territory, in Iowa’s two games last week. The senior has scored 85 points the last three outings, the most by a Hawkeye in a three-game span against Big Ten competition since Roy Marble had 86 in 1989.
? Iowa’s scoring average of 72.7 is its highest since the 2000-01 season (74.1).
? Iowa has collected four wins in the month of February (Minnesota, Penn State and Indiana). The last time the Hawkeyes had four or more February wins was in 2008 (four).
? Iowa is 9-1 when scoring 80 points or more, the last two seasons. The Hawkeyes are 13-0 when holding opponents to fewer than 60 points, the last two years.
HAWKEYES FALL AT ILLINOIS, 65-54
Illinois won its 11th straight game over Iowa in Champaign with a 65-54 win Sunday night in Assembly Hall. The Illini used a 20-5 run to build a double-digit first-half advantage. Iowa trailed 34-23 at halftime. The Hawkeyes cut the deficit to four (38-34) midway through the second half but were unable to get any closer. Senior Matt Gatens continued his hot shooting, scoring a game-high 22 points, bolstered by 5-of-6 shooting from behind the arc. Sophomore Roy Devyn Marble had 10 points, and collected game highs in assists (six) and steals (four). The four thefts equal a personal best. Freshman Josh Oglesby netted all of his nine points over the final 20 minutes. Illinois sophomore center Meyers Leonard came off the bench to post a double-double (22 points and 14 rebounds), while Brandon Paul had 17 points.
LAST GAME TIP-INS
? Matt Gatens surpassed the 20-point plateau for the fourth consecutive game, eighth time this season and 17th time in his career.
? Gatens has led the team in scoring the last four outings, which matches his longest streak of leading the team in scoring; accomplished the feat last season (Iowa State, Drake, Louisiana Tech and Illinois).
? Matt Gatens scored 55 points in two games last week (27.5 avg.). Additionally, he has made 19 of his last 26 (.731) 3-point attempts the last three games and 24-of-his-last-33 (.727) the last four contests.
? After winning its first two Big Ten road games (Wisconsin and Minnesota), the Hawkeyes have lost their last six away from Iowa City.
? Matt Gatens’ five 3-pointers gives him 228 career triples, which moves him past Chris Kingsbury (1994-96) and into second place on Iowa’s all-time 3-pointers made list.
? Zach McCabe led Iowa with seven rebounds, snapping Aaron White’s five-game streak of leading the Hawkeyes in rebounding. Sunday marked the seventh game this season McCabe led or shared team-high honors in rebounding.
? Illinois outrebounded Iowa by eight (35-27). Iowa fell to 4-11 when the opposition had more rebounds.
? Iowa’s 54 points are the second fewest it has scored this season (47 versus Ohio State).
Iowa holds a 12-8 advantage in the series that began with a 27-17 Husker win in 1907. Nebraska won this season’s earlier meeting, 79-73, on Jan. 26 in Iowa City. The Hawkeyes were coming off an eight-day layoff before playing that contest. The Hawkeyes have won eight of the last 12 and five of the last eight in the series. Nebraska holds a 5-4 advantage in games played between the two schools in Lincoln. Iowa last played at Nebraska on Nov. 27, 1976, which was the first-ever game played at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. The Hawkeyes won that contest, 71-57. The teams have split the last eight meetings in Lincoln, dating back to 1930.
? Nebraska is 12-15 overall and 4-12 in Big Ten play. The Huskers have lost six of their last seven games since beating Iowa on Jan. 26. Nebraska is 9-7 in home games, notching conference home victories over Penn State, Illinois and nationally-ranked Indiana.
? The Huskers have been outscored by an average of 10.4 points the last seven games, including an average of 23 points its last two games, which were played on the road, at Purdue and Michigan State.
? The Huskers lost their last game, 62-34, Saturday night at nationally-ranked Michigan State. The 34 points is the lowest point total in the Doc Sadler era and is the third-fewest points Nebraska scored in a basketball game since 1947.
? Nebraska leading scorer and only player averaging double figures in scoring, Bo Spencer (15.1 ppg), suffered an ankle injury in the first half of Saturday’s game at Michigan State and did not see any action in the second half. Brandon Ubel was the Huskers’ leading scorer against the Spartans, netting 13. The Huskers attempted only five free throws (4-of-5, .800) and were 2-of-17 (.118) from 3-point range against Michigan State.
? Nebraska’s Brandon Richardson scored a career-high 25 points, bolstered by 6-of-7 (.857) shooting from 3-point range in a 79-73 win over Iowa in Iowa City on Jan. 26. Since that game, Richardson has made six 3-pointers (6-of-17, .353) the seven games since the Iowa game on Jan. 26.
? The Huskers are 7-2 this season when scoring 70 points or more.
? Nebraska’s Bo Spencer ranks ninth in Big Ten scoring (15.1); 11th in assists (3.4); and first in free throw percentage (.880). Brandon Richardson is third in steals (1.9), while Brandon Ubel is 14th in rebounding (5.3).
? Nebraska ranks second in the Big Ten in free throw percentage (.754) and seventh in scoring defense (64.7). The Huskers rank 12th in scoring offense (60.9).
? Junior center Jorge Brian Diaz played against Iowa on Jan. 26, but has been battling a foot injury all season and his missed the last six games and 11 overall.
? The Huskers are 6-5 in games played decided by nine points or fewer, including winning by six points over the Hawkeyes in Iowa City (79-73) on Jan. 26.
NEBRASKA WON THE LAST MEETING
Nebraska erased an early 11-point deficit and rallied to post a 79-73 win over Iowa on Jan. 26 in Iowa City. The Huskers scored on 13 of their last 15 possessions the last eight minutes. Iowa had four players score in double figures, led by sophomore Zach McCabe for the second straight contest. McCabe scored 20 points for the second consecutive game, making nine of his 11 field goal attempts (.818), including 2-of-3 from distance. Roy Devyn Marble tallied nine of his 15 points at the foul line, while Matt Gatens had 12 and Aaron White contributed 11 points and a team-high nine rebounds. Nebraska was led by Brandon Richardson, who scored a game-high 25 points and had six rebounds, five assists and two steals.
NUMBER OF THE WEEK — 13
Iowa has 13 home wins this season (13-5), the most since collecting 13 home victories in 2009. Five of the Hawkeyes’ 13 victories have come in league play.
IOWA, NEBRASKA TIP-INS
? Iowa has played on Leap Year five previous times (2-3). The last time the Hawkeyes played on Feb. 29, was a 70-63 loss to Minnesota in 1964. Four of the five Leap Year games have been on the road, including the last four.
? Iowa is 4-3 against ranked Big Ten teams and 3-6 versus unranked conference foes.
? Iowa’s second (Roy Devyn Marble, 11.1), third (Aaron White, 10.3), fourth (Melsahn Basabe, 8.0), fifth (Zach McCabe, 7.5) and sixth (Josh Oglesby 6.2) leading scorers are all underclassmen.
? Iowa is the only Big Ten team with two players with 45+ steals (Roy Devyn Marble — 48 and Matt Gatens — 45).
? Matt Gatens is only the third player to hit seven+ 3-pointers in back-to-back Big Ten games (versus Indiana and Wisconsin) since 1996-97. Talor Battle (Penn State) and Jon Diebler (Ohio State) accomplished the feat a year ago.
? The Hawkeyes rank first in the Big Ten in steals (7.9); third in scoring offense (73.3); and fourth in free throw percentage (71.8 percent).
? Iowa ranks 51st in the country in assist/turnover ratio (1.14); 57th in assists (14.4); and 59th in steals (7.8). Individually, Matt Gatens is 45th in free throw percentage (.850), while Roy Devyn Marble is 55th in assist/turnover ratio (2.18).
? The Huskers rank 20th in the country in free throw percentage (.754) and 54th in fewest fouls per contest (16.6). Individually, Bo Spencer ranks 17th in the nation in free throw percentage (.880) while Brandon Richardson ranks 62nd in steals (1.9).
? Nebraska’s roster is comprised of 16 student-athletes. The roster consists of five seniors, six juniors and five freshmen (two redshirts). Three players hail from Nebraska, two from Kansas, and one each from California, Missouri, Texas, Arkansas, Georgia, Utah, New Jersey, Louisiana, Brazil, Puerto Rico and Germany.
? Fran McCaffery coached against Nebraska before coming to Iowa. McCaffery took his 1987-88 Lehigh team to Lincoln, Neb., to play in the Cornhusker Classic. McCaffery’s Lehigh team lost, 71-66, on Dec. 4, 1986. The next day, they defeated Ball State (72-64) in the consolation game.
? Both Iowa’s Matt Gatens and Nebraska’s Brandon Richardson rank among the Big Ten active career leaders in steals. Richardson ranks second with 141, while Gatens is fourth with 138.
Matt Gatens NAMED BIG TEN CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior Matt Gatens was named Big Ten co-Player of the Week along with Purdue’s Robbie Hummel on Monday. The honor is the first of Gatens’ career and the first for a Hawkeye since Jake Kelly earned the weekly accolade on March 9, 2009. Gatens averaged 27.5 points in Iowa’s two games last week. He poured in a game and career-high 33 points to help lift the Hawkeyes to a 67-66 upset victory over No. 15/16 Wisconsin Thursday night in Iowa City. The 33 points helped him surpass Greg Brunner, Don Nelson and Andre Woolridge for ninth place on Iowa’s career scoring chart. He made his first five 3-pointers in that game extending his school record streak of consecutive 3-pointers to 12 spanning the Indiana (Feb. 19) and Wisconsin (Feb. 26) contests. He finished the Wisconsin contest with seven triples (7-of-10, .700). The win was Iowa’s fourth victory over a top 25 ranked opponent this season, the most since the 2005-06 campaign. “I’m very proud of Matt,” said head coach Fran McCaffery. “He deserves the recognition. Not only is he playing as well as anybody in our league, but I also think in the country right now. He is the epitome of character and class not only in terms of what he’s done on the floor, but how he carries himself.” The Iowa City native continued his white-hot shooting at Illinois on Sunday, sinking his first five 3-pointers for the second straight contest. Gatens finished with a game-high 22 points, marking the fourth consecutive game he scored more than 20 points. He finished the game shooting 5-of-6 (.833) from long distance. His five 3-pointers against the Illini moved him past Chris Kingsbury and into second place on Iowa’s career 3-point list with 228 career treys. Gatens shot at a 75 percent clip (12-of-16) from 3-point territory in last week’s two games. Furthermore, he has made 19 of his last 26 (.731) 3-point attempts the last three games and 24 of his last 33 (.727) the last four contests.
IOWA POSTING BIG WINS
Iowa has posted six wins against teams ranked in the top 85 of the RPI, including four inside the top 20. The Hawkeyes have registered victories over Michigan (15), Indiana, (17), and two wins over Wisconsin (20) and Minnesota (85). The Hawkeyes have four wins over top 25 teams; only Michigan State (six), Ohio State (five) and Michigan (five) have more.
HAWKEYES SURGING IN FEBRUARY
Iowa has won four of its last seven games, including winning two of the last three against ranked opponents (No. 18 Indiana and No. 15 Wisconsin). Iowa has held six of its seven February opponents to fewer than 70 points and three of those below 40 percent from the field. The previous six teams the Hawkeyes faced averaged 81.2 points and 50.4 percent shooting. In the seven February contests, Matt Gatens is averaging 22.4 points, bolstered by 31-of-50 (.620) shooting from long distance. The 22.4 February scoring average ranks second behind Northwestern’s John Shurna (22.9). Aaron White is averaging 12.4 points and eight rebounds, while Roy Devyn Marble is averaging 10.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.9 assists.
NOTING Matt Gatens…
? His 24 triples since Feb. 16 are the most in the country. Western Carolina’s Keaton Cole is second (21), followed by John Jenkins of Vanderbilt (17).
? His 72.7 percent (24-of-33) shooting percentage from long distance ranks third best in the country since Feb. 16 (first if you take in account a minimum of 25 attempts). South Dakota State’s Jordan Dykstra is first (.786, 11-of-14), while Scott Christopherson is second (.737, 14-of-19).
? Has scored 85 points the last three games. The last time a Hawkeye netted 85 points or more in three straight games against conference competition was Roy Marble (86) in 1989. Marble scored 30 at Michigan, 37 at Illinois and 19 vs. Indiana. The last time a Hawkeye scored 85 points or more against any teams was Adam Haluska (88) in 2006. Haluska had 21 points at Drake, 36 vs. Georgia State and 21 against Texas Southern.
? Is averaging 22.4 points per game in February, which ranks second in the Big Ten behind Northwestern’s John Shurna (22.9).
? Became the first Big Ten player to score 30+ versus two teams (Indiana and Wisconsin) ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 since 1996-97.
? Became the fourth Big Ten player in the last 10 seasons to score 30+ points in back-to-back games versus conference opponents.
? Became the first Hawkeye since Adam Haluska in 2007 to score 30 points in consecutive games. Haluska netted 33 vs. Indiana and 34 at Minnesota. Gatens is one of five players to score 30+ points in consecutive Big Ten games since 2000-01 (Marcus Taylor of Michigan State in 2002; Minnesota’s Vincent Grier in 2005; Evan Turner of Ohio State in 2010; Iowa’s Adam Haluska in 2007).
? The 33 points against Wisconsin are the second-most by a Big Ten player in conference play this season (Illinois’ Brandon Paul had 43 versus Ohio State).
? The 30-point outburst against Wisconsin pushed the senior past Greg Brunner, Don Nelson and Andre Woolridge and moved into ninth place on Iowa’s all-time scoring chart with 1,536 points.
? Is averaging 15.7 points, the highest scoring average by a Hawkeye since Adam Haluska averaged 20.5 points in 2007.
? His five 3-pointers at Illinois (Feb. 26) gives him 228 career triples, which moved him past Chris Kingsbury (1994-96) and into second place on Iowa’s all-time 3-pointers made list.
? Has surpassed the 20-point plateau four consecutive games, eight times this season and 17 in his career. The last time a Hawkeye netted 20+ points in four straight games against Big Ten competition was Andre Woolridge in 1997. Woolridge tallied 20 at Purdue, 21 vs. Wisconsin, 27 vs. Ohio State and 25 at Michigan.
? Scored 55 points in two games last week (27.5 ppg.). Additionally, he has made 19 of his last 26 (.731) 3-point attempts the last two games and 24 of his last 33 (.727) the last four contests.
? Made 40-of-113 (.354) from 3-point range the first 25 games of the season. Gatens has made 72.7 percent (24-of-33) from long distance the last four outings.
? Made a school-record 12 consecutive triples spanning the Indiana (Feb. 19) and Wisconsin (Feb. 23) contests.
? The 33 points scored against the Badgers are the second-most scored by a Wisconsin opponent in the last four years. Gatens and Kansas State’s Jacob Pullen (38 points against the Badgers in the 2011 NCAA Tournament) were the two highest scoring outputs since Davidson’s Stephen Curry tallied 33 points in the 2008 NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 on March 28, 2008.
? Drained a combined 14 triples against Indiana and Wisconsin, which is the most ever by a Hawkeye in a two-game span. Sank a combined 19 treys the last three contests, the most ever by a Hawkeye over a span of three games.
? After 85 points in three games (28-of-47, .596 FGs and 19-of-26, .731 3-pt FGs), he has vaulted to fifth in conference scoring (273 points). He is only three points behind Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger (276 points). Gatens is the second-highest scoring senior in the league behind Northwestern’s John Shurna (20.6).
? Has made a personal single-season best 64 triples, besting 58 he sank his sophomore campaign. He is shooting at a 44 percent clip from long distance this season, which is also a single-season best. He shot 40 percent from 3-point range as a freshman.
? His 64 treys rank 13th best in a single season. He is one 3-pointer from tying three others (Jeff Horner in 2004; Dean Oliver in 2001; Chris Kingsbury in 1996) for 10th on the list.
GATENS ABOUT TO MAKE HISTORY
Senior Matt Gatens will become the first Hawkeye to lead the team in free throw percentage four consecutive seasons. Also, he is on pace to become only the seventh Hawkeye since 1939, and the first to do so since Acie Earl (1991-93), to lead the team in scoring three straight seasons. Other former Hawkeyes leading the squad in scoring three consecutive years include: Dick Ives (1944-46); Bill Logan (1954-56); Dave Gunther (1957-59); Don Nelson (1960-62); Greg Stokes (1983-85); Acie Earl (1991-93).
CLEANING THE GLASS
Aaron White has seen his rebounding numbers increase in Big Ten play. The freshman averaged 4.8 boards in nonconference action and has crashed the boards even more in conference play, averaging a team-best 6.1. White has led the Hawkeyes in rebounding five of the last six games, including a streak of five straight, which was the longest streak by a Hawkeye this season and the longest streak since Aaron Fuller led the team in six consecutive contests in 2010. White is averaging eight rebounds over his last seven games, including three games with 10+ rebounds. He ranks third in the Big Ten in February rebounding.
IMPROVED 3-POINT SHOOTING
Thanks in large part to Matt Gatens’ 3-point shooting accuracy as of late, the Hawkeyes have seen better 3-point shooting percentages during the month of February. Iowa has made 41.1 percent of its three-point attempts in the month of February, the second best mark in the Big Ten along with Northwestern.
GATENS DELIVERS SECOND HALF OUTBURSTS
Matt Gatens has put up big numbers in the second half in three of the last four games (at Penn State, vs. No. 18/20 Indiana and vs. No. 15/16 Wisconsin). Gatens averaged 18.7 points, shooting 14-of-19 (.737) from 3-point range and 19-of-28 (.679) from the field in those three games. Gatens has significantly increased his second-half scoring production the last four games. He scored 19 of his game-high 21 points after the break at Penn State (Feb. 16). The Iowa City native tallied 22 of his game-high 30 points in the final 20 minutes vs. No. 18/20 Indiana. He netted 15 of his career-high 33 in the second stanza versus No. 15/16 Wisconsin on Feb. 23. Gatens scored seven points on 1-of-4 shooting from the field and 4-of-6 from the foul line in Iowa’s last game at Illinois on Sunday.
GATENS CLIMBING CHARTS
Matt Gatens’ recent scoring surge (106 points the last four games) has vaulted him past Jeff Horner, Greg Brunner, Don Nelson and Andre Woolridge and into ninth place on Iowa’s career scoring chart. The senior is only three points from tying Dean Oliver (1998-01) for eighth. Gatens enters Wednesday’s contest at Nebraska with 1,558 career points. Additionally, his five triples at Illinois moved him past Chris Kingsbury (1994-96) and into second place on Iowa’s all-time 3-pointers made chart. Gatens enters Wednesday’s game at Nebraska with 228 treys. Jeff Horner (2003-06) is the record holder with 262. Gatens is one of only two players in school history to have 1,550+ points, 400+ rebounds and 250+ assists. The senior has 1,558 points, 439 rebounds and 281 assists. Roy Marble (1986-89) had 2,116 points, 668 rebounds and 288 assists. Gatens is only six steals from cracking the top 10 in career thefts at Iowa. The native of Iowa City will finish his career in the top 15 in scoring and steals and top five in free throw percentage and 3-pointers made.
BASABE COMING ON STRONG
Melsahn Basabe played a big role in Iowa’s two home wins over No. 18 Indiana and No. 15 Wisconsin. The sophomore averaged 24.5 minutes, nine points, six rebounds and four blocks in the victories. The last four contests, he is averaging 6.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 22 minutes.
REBOUNDING KEY IN OUTCOMES
In Iowa’s seven Big Ten wins, it has posted a +3.6 rebounding margin advantage. However, in its nine conference losses, Iowa has been outrebounded by 5.1 boards. Overall, Iowa is 11-2 in games this season when having the edge on the glass. The two losses when the Hawkeyes had a positive rebounding margin came on the road at Iowa State and Northwestern.
ESPN.COM RANKS NATION’S TOP FRESHMEN
ESPN.com released a midseason report on the nation’s top freshmen. Included in the list is Iowa’s Aaron White. White is ranked No. 15. Indiana’s Cody Zeller is second and Trey Burke of Michigan is seventh. White ranks third in Iowa scoring (10.3) and first in rebounding (5.5).
IOWA VS. RANKED TEAMS
Iowa has played seven games against ranked competition this season (4-3), winning the last two. The four wins are the most Iowa has collected in a season since winning nine during the 2005-06 campaign. The Hawkeyes beat No. 11 Wisconsin (72-65) on Dec. 31 in Madison and No. 15 Wisconsin (67-66) on Feb. 23 in Iowa City, 13th-ranked Michigan (75-59) on Jan. 14 in Iowa City and 18th-ranked Indiana (78-66) on Feb. 19 in Iowa City. Iowa fell to No. 6 Ohio State (76-47) on Jan. 7 in Iowa City, No. 6 Michigan State (95-61) on Jan. 10 in East Lansing and No. 16 Indiana (103-89) on Jan. 29 in Bloomington.
WHITE EARNS STARTING SPOT
Aaron White was Iowa’s most productive player off the bench the first 21 games, but has started the last eight. The freshman has averaged 12 points and 6.1 rebounds the last 18 games. White earned his first career start at No. 16 Indiana on Jan. 31. He stuffed the stat sheet with 17 points, nine rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals in Iowa’s triumph over Penn State (Feb. 4). His efforts earned him Big Ten co-Freshman of the Week accolades, which is the third time (Nov. 14, Dec. 26 and Feb. 6) he has earned the weekly distinction. White’s numbers the last five games have been impressive, averaging 12.2 points and eight rebounds. He posted consecutive doubles at Northwestern (Feb. 9) and Penn State (Feb. 16) and was two points shy of notching his third straight versus No. 18 Indiana (Feb. 19). The rookie scored 17 points (7-of-10 FG, 2-of-3 3-pt FG) and corralled a personal-best 12 boards against the Wildcats. White totaled 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds to go along with career-best three rejections at Penn State. White has scored in double digits 13 times, including 12 of the last 19 games. White has led the team in rebounding six of the last nine contests. The 6-foot-8 wing player has scored 15 points or more eight times, which is the third most by a Big Ten rookie this season. White was named Big Ten co-Freshman of the Week after his performance in Iowa’s victory over Chicago State (Nov. 11). The native of Strongsville, Ohio, shined in his Hawkeye debut, leading all scorers and rebounders with a personal-best 19 points and 10 boards. The 19 points are the most by an Iowa freshman in an opener, equaling Dick Ives’ 19 scored against Nebraska in his debut on Dec. 10, 1943. Furthermore, White’s performance marked the first time a Hawkeye posted a double-double, in a season opener, since Dean Oliver had 10 points and 12 assists in a victory over Chicago State in 1997. It was the first time a Hawkeye freshman had a double-double, points and rebounds, since Jess Settles had 13 points and 11 rebounds versus Drake in 1993.
MARBLE ADVANCES TO FINALS OF GEICO PLAY OF THE YEAR
Hawkeye fans can vote for Roy Devyn Marble in the finals of the GEICO Play of the Year. Marble had an emphatic one-handed slam vs. Minnesota on Feb 1. Fans can vote for Marble once per day until March 5 at facebook.com/bestofcollegebasketball. The winner will be announced on GEICO presents Best of College Basketball 2012 on CBS March 25, at noon (CT). The seven other finalists are: Christian Watford (Indiana), Robbie Hummel (Purdue), Damen Bell-Holter (Oral Roberts), Chase Spreen (Lindsey Wilson), Peyton Siva (Louisville), C.J. Fair (Syracuse), and Isaiah Sykes (Central Florida).
STAT SHEET STUFFER
Roy Devyn Marble’s level of play has been stellar the last 24 games. The sophomore has averaged 12.21 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.9 assists during that span. Also, he is shooting 43 percent from the field and 71 percent from the foul line during the 24-game stretch. He has amassed a solid assist-to-turnover ratio this season. He has 109 assists to only 50 turnovers, ranking fifth in the Big Ten (2.2) and 31st nationally. Marble has been credited with four assists or more 16 times this season, including collecting six or more the last four games (six at Penn State, seven vs. Indiana; a career-best eight against Wisconsin and six at Illinois). Last season, Marble averaged 5.7 points, 2.4 rebounds, and was credited with 41 assists and 21 steals in 31 contests. He started the last six games of 2010-11. Also, he shot 53 percent from the free throw line (35-of-66). This year, Marble has seen improved numbers, averaging 11.1 points, four rebounds, and has collected 109 assists and 50 steals. He has started the last 21 contests. From the foul line this season, the sophomore has seen significant improvement, shooting 72.2 percent (91-of-126).
Freshmen Aaron White and Josh Oglesby have combined for 11 games of scoring 15 or more points this season. White has scored in double figures in 12 of the last 19 contests, including netting 15 points or more in eight of those outings.
HAWKEYE BIG TEN FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGES
In Iowa’s seven Big Ten victories, opponents were just 47-of-162 (.290) from long distance and 164-of-402 (.408) overall from the field. Iowa made 171-of-380 (.450) from the field and 39-of-93 (.409) from the 3-point range in those wins. Conversely, Hawkeye opponents shot 50 percent (260-of-518) from the field and 62-of-163 (.380) from 3-point territory, compared to 44.5 percent (210-of-472) from the field and 36 percent (48-of-132) from long distance for Iowa, in the Hawkeyes’ nine conference defeats.
SINKING THE FREEBEES
Last year, Iowa’s free throw percentage was 67.6 percent. This season, the Hawkeyes have improved in that area, shooting 71.8 percent, which ranks fourth best in the Big Ten. Twenty-two percent of Iowa’s offense this year has come from the foul line. The Hawkeyes have missed only 36 free throws (117-of-153, .765) in the final five minutes of games. Iowa has attempted 20 free throws or more 18 times this season, nine of which have come during league play, including seven of the last 11 games.
OGLESBY HAS CAREER GAME
Freshman Josh Oglesby had two of his best games of the season, both against Indiana. Oglesby came off the bench to score a career-best 24 points at Indiana on Jan. 29. The native of Cedar Rapids missed only four of his 12 field-goal attempts. His previous high was 16 points against Northern Illinois on Nov. 17. The six triples tie for the 15th-most in a single game for the Hawkeyes. Additionally, the 24 points are the most by a Hawkeye freshman in a game since Melsahn Basabe posted 25 at Michigan, almost a year to the day, on Jan. 30, 2011. In the return game against the Hoosiers (Feb. 19), Oglesby netted 11 points, five of which were scored at the free throw line. Oglesby started his first career game at Penn State (Feb. 16). The rookie played a season-high 27 minutes and had three points, three assists and three rebounds against the Nittany Lions. He tallied all nine of his points in the second half at Illinois on Sunday. The native of Cedar Rapids has started the last four games. He is averaging 6.2 points in 29 games this season. Oglesby has made 34 triples, which are the fourth most by a Hawkeye freshman in a single season at Iowa. Matt Gatens holds the record with 52 (2009). Oglesby is shooting 37.9 percent beyond the arc, which currently ranks as the seventh best percentage in a season by an Iowa rookie. Fifty-seven percent of Oglesby’s scoring production has come from 3-point territory (102-of-179 points), which ranks third amongst Big Ten players. Oglesby has led the team in scoring four times (Northern Illinois, Creighton, Clemson and Indiana).
Check out the Iowa basketball team’s new website, HawkeyeBasketball.com, devoted to everything on-and-off-the-court surrounding the program. HawkeyeBasketball.com, allows fans a chance to go behind the scenes with the Hawkeye basketball program on and off the court. The site is complete with exclusive videos, photo galleries and content featuring the basketball program. HawkeyeBasketball.com will be updated throughout the year with exclusive videos, including game highlights and player features, along with news stories and other content.
HAWKEYE FAST BREAKS
? The Big Ten is the No. 1 ranked conference in the RPI and Sagarin ratings. Iowa’s Sagarin rating is 99 and a strength of schedule of 24. Iowa’s RPI rating is 125, while its schedule strength is 77.
? Iowa is 5-4 in games decided by nine points or fewer and 10-10 in games decided by 10 or more points.
? Iowa has made 467 free throws this season, the most it has sank in a single-season since 2005-06. Iowa made 501 free throws in 2005-06.
? The Hawkeyes were ranked ninth (.352) in the Big Ten in 3-point field goal percentage (overall games) in mid-January. Iowa has since vaulted to fourth (.366).
? Ten of Iowa’s 14 losses have come to teams ranked in the RPI top 75.
? For the second straight year, Iowa has won its first two games in the month of February. Last year, the Hawkeyes beat Michigan State (Feb. 2) and Indiana (Feb. 5); this season Iowa topped Minnesota (Feb. 1) and Penn State (Feb. 4).
? Iowa averages 80 points in its wins, compared to 64.8 points in its defeats, a differential of 15.2 points. The Hawkeyes own a +16.1 point differential in their scoring defense, and +9.8 rebounding and +6.2 assists margins in wins compared to losses.
? Iowa’s attendance numbers are up again this season, after a 20 percent bump a year ago. Last season, Iowa averaged 11,096 fans. Through 18 home games this season, the Hawkeyes are averaging 11,643.
? Freshman Josh Oglesby became the first Hawkeye reserve to lead the team in scoring, in back-to-back games (Northern Illinois and Creighton), since Ricky Davis paced Iowa with 25 and 18 on the road at Wisconsin (Feb. 3) and Michigan State (Feb. 7), respectively, in 1998. Like Oglesby, Davis accomplished the feat as a freshman.
? After winning at No. 11 Wisconsin on Dec. 31 (72-65) and on the road at Minnesota (64-62) on Jan. 4, Iowa won two-straight Big Ten road games for the first time since 2007. The Hawkeyes won at Michigan on Jan. 31, 2007 (69-62) and at Minnesota on Feb. 7 (91-78). Iowa beat Indiana at home on Feb. 3 (81-75) in between those two road victories. The last time Iowa won consecutive road games in back-to-back games was 1998, beating Ohio State (61-46) on Jan. 14 and Minnesota (82-69) on Jan. 18.
? At least 10 players have seen action in 21 of Iowa’s 29 games.
? Iowa has had five players score in double figures three times (North Carolina A&T, Drake and Central Arkansas). The Hawkeyes had five players score 12 points or more in its win over North Carolina A&T (Nov. 14). It marked only the fourth time the Hawkeyes had five players tally 12 points or more in a game (UW-Green Bay in 2003, Michigan in 2004, SIU-Edwardsville in 2010 and North Carolina A&T in 2011).
Fran McCaffery has assembled one of the most experienced coaching staffs in the country. Assistant coaches Kirk Speraw, Sherman Dillard and Andrew Francis have over six decades of combined coaching experience. Furthermore, the entire coaching staff combines for 47 years of head coaching experience. Director of Basketball Operations Jerry Strom is in his 31st season as a member of the Iowa basketball staff. Additionally, Iowa’s new video coordinator, Al Seibert, has 18 years of collegiate coaching experience.
IMPROVEMENT UNDER McCAFFERY IN SECOND YEAR
Fran McCaffery-coached teams have posted improved win totals and scoring output from their first year to second with McCaffery as a head coach. At Lehigh, his team improved by two wins (13 in 1986 to 15 in 1987). His UNC Greensboro team had four more victories from 2000 (15) and 2001 (19). At Siena his team improved by five victories, registering 15 in 2006 to 20 in 2007. His Lehigh team averaged 2.8 more points its second year compared to year one. His UNC Greensboro team had a +1.9 scoring increase and +1.8 at Siena. Currently, Iowa is averaging 5.5 more points this year compared to last season.
Iowa has played 2,654 games since beginning basketball in 1902. Iowa’s overall record is 1,592-1,062 (.600). That includes a 955-352 (.731) record in home games, a 547-720 (.432) record in contests away from Iowa City, a 710-727 (.494) mark in Big Ten games and a 361-116 (.757) record in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
ON THE HORIZON
Iowa returns to Iowa City this weekend for its home finale against Northwestern on Saturday. Tip-off is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Mediacom Court at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The UI basketball program will honor its four seniors and senior manager prior to the game.