Sept. 10, 2013
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — A Nov. 22 basketball game against the University of Pennsylvania will be extra special for Hawkeye Peter Jok. The freshman will be playing against his brother, Dau, who is a senior for the Ivy League Quakers.
“I found out earlier this summer that we were going to play against Penn and my brother,” said Jok. “It’s going to be fun going against him. We have never really played against each other before in a meaningful game.”
Jok says the ¬last time the two competed against each other in any capacity was four years ago in Des Moines, Iowa.
“We were in some pickup games when he was a senior in high school, and I was a freshman,” said Jok.
Dau and Peter Jok’s father, Sudanese general Dut Jok, was killed when both were children living in Sudan. Peter views his older brother as a role model and father figure.
“He’s kind of a dad to us since my dad died,” said Jok. “We look up to him.”
Jok is a 6-foot-6, 200-pound guard, who will be looked upon to add depth to the Hawkeye backcourt in 2013-14. Jok is a 2013 Parade All-American after leading Iowa Class 4A in scoring (23.6 points per game), making 42 percent of his 3-point attempts and 93 percent of his free throws.
Since Dau moved to Philadelphia to attend Penn, the brothers have been able to see each other three or four times. Although, their face-to-face time has been limited, they remain close and in frequent contact.
“We text each other all the time and talk on the phone about twice a week,” said Peter.
Jok said the introduction of his basketball playing was sparked by his brother… and trips to McDonald’s.
“My brother played a big role in getting me to play hoops,” said Peter. “I didn’t really like basketball, but he would always take me with him to work out.”
When Peter was in fifth grade, his guardian, Mike Nixon, encouraged him to join a club team.
“My mom said I should try it out, but I didn’t want to,” admitted Jok. “Ultimately I ended up going and then (Mike) took me to McDonald’s after the first practice.”
Jok still wasn’t taken by the sport, but his mother encouraged him to return a second time to see if he would like it.
“I went back one more time, and during the practice I kept thinking to myself that I was quitting,” Jok said. “Then after practice, he took me to McDonald’s again.”
Jok said he wanted to go back a third time to see if Nixon would again take him to McDonald’s.
“He took me again, and I was like, ‘I’m going to keep playing.'”