By MATTHEW WEITZEL
GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands — The unbeaten University of Iowa men’s basketball team arrived in the Cayman Islands Saturday afternoon to begin onsite preparation for the inaugural Cayman Islands Classic.
The Hawkeyes (3-0) had an early practice Sunday morning at the site of the tournament, John Gray Gymnasium. Iowa and Louisiana will tipoff the tournament on Monday with the first game of the day at 11 a.m. (CT).
After winning their first three games by an average of 26 points, these next three games in three days will test the Hawkeyes. Louisiana and Iowa are joined in the eight-team field by Buffalo, South Dakota State, Cincinnati, Richmond, Wyoming, and UAB.
Junior forward Ahmad Wagner said the team has been working hard the past few days getting ready for this tournament.
“Playing three games in three days is going to be intense,” said Wagner. “It’s going to be hard on our bodies but we’ve done a good job this season being smart with our bodies. We feel like we are prepared for our first game.”
Louisiana (2-1) scored over 100 points in two of its first three games, winning its last two games after dropping its opener at OIe Miss. Six players average in double figures, with Cedric Russell pacing the Ragin’ Cajuns averaging 16.7 points per game. Louisiana, a team that won 21 games a year ago, return 75 percent of its offense and 79 percent of its rebounding.
Sophomore point guard Jordan Bohannon is thankful for being able to play basketball in yet another country after visiting four different countries in August.
“This is a beautiful place,” Bohannon said. “We’re fortunate to have this opportunity to come here and represent our state.”
Wagner, who has started the first three games, said the team is locked in and focused on the task at hand.
“This is a business trip and we want to win this tournament,” said Wagner. “We feel like we have a good team this year and we’re excited to show it.”
Fans can listen to the game on the Hawkeye Radio Network or watch online via FloHoops.