MBB Game Notes: at Seton Hall

OPPONENT Iowa (2-0) at Seton Hall (2-0)
LOCATION South Orange, New Jersey (Prudential Center)
DATE Wednesday, Nov. 16
TIP-OFF 6:30 p.m. (CT)
RADIO Hawkeye Sports Network

The Setting

Iowa (2-0) returns to action on Wednesday against Seton Hall (2-0) in the Gavitt Games. Tipoff is slated for 6:30 p.m. (CT) at the Prudential Center in South Orange, New Jersey.


Radio: Iowa games are broadcast on the Hawkeye Radio Network. Gary Dolphin handles the play-by-play, along with color commentator Bob Hansen. The network includes more than 40 stations that blanket the state of Iowa and include portions of Illinois, Nebraska, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin. The Hawkeye Radio Network coverage includes a 60-minute pregame show.


TV: Wednesday’s game will be televised nationally on FS1. Tim Brando and Donny Marshall will call the action.


  • The Hawkeyes and Pirates have previously met twice before. Iowa beat Seton Hall (85-63) on Dec. 29, 1982, in the Rochester Classic in Rochester, New York, while the Pirates defeated the Hawkeyes (91-83) on Nov. 17, 2016, in Iowa City.
  • This will be Iowa’s fourth contest in the Gavitt Games. The Hawkeyes won at Marquette (2015), while losing at home to Seton Hall (2016) and DePaul (2019).
  • Fran McCaffery is in his 27th season as a head coach and is five wins from 500.
  • Wednesday will be Iowa’s first true road game of the season. The Hawkeyes were 6-6 in true road games a year ago including, including winning four of their last five.
  • Six Hawkeyes are Iowa natives, two hail from Illinois, two are international (Serbia and England), and one each from New York, Nebraska, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Indiana. Iowa’s average height is 6-foot-5.
  • Iowa won 68 games combined over the last three seasons (20 in 2020; 22 in 2021; 26 in 2022). The 68 victories are the fourth most over a three-year stretch in program history and most since winning 77 contests from 1987-89.
  • Iowa returns 52.4 percent of its scoring from last season, third most in the Big Ten.
  • Iowa won four games in four days to capture the 2022 Big Ten Tournament Championship, its third tournament title in program history and first since 2006.
  • The Hawkeyes have won 42 games over Big Ten teams — including conference tournament contests — over the past three seasons, second most in the league (Illinois, 47).
  • Redshirt senior Connor McCaffery and redshirt junior Patrick McCaffery are one of 22 father/coach and son/player duos in Division I in 2022-23. Of the 22 schools, Iowa and Michigan are the only programs with a father/coach and two sons on the roster.
  • After his historic season, Keegan Murray was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the fourth pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, the highest selection by a Hawkeye in program history.
  • Keegan Murray became Iowa’s single-season scoring leader (822 points). After going 117 years without a player scoring 700 points in a single season, the Hawkeyes have had a player score over 700 points in each of the last three seasons: Luka Garza scored 740 in 2020 and 747 in 2021.
  • Iowa posted its ninth upper division Big Ten finish in the last 10 seasons. The Hawkeyes have finished fifth or better in the regular season standings six of the last eight years.
  • Iowa led the Big Ten and ranked fifth nationally in scoring offense (83.2). The Hawkeyes have led the league in scoring five of the last nine seasons, including the last four.
  • The Hawkeyes boasted a 15-3 record in home games in 2021-22. Iowa has won 14+ home contests each of the last four years.
  • The Hawkeyes were tops in the country in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.74); fourth in fewest turnovers per game (9.2); and seventh in turnover margin (4.4).
  • Fran McCaffery has coached a first-team All-Big Ten honoree seven of the last nine years. He has guided Iowa to 20+ wins eight of the last 10 seasons, including four-straight.


  • Last year, Seton Hall went 21-11 overall, and posted an 11-8 mark in the Big EAST Conference.
  • The Pirates won both games at home last week, defeating Monmouth in its opener 79-52, and cruising past Saint Peter’s, 80-44.
  • Two transfers led the team in its most recent victory. Senior Al-Amir Dawes, formerly at Clemson, posted 13 points and 10 rebounds. Junior Dre Davis, formerly at Louisville, tallied 13 points and was a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line.
  • Alexis Yetna (knee), JaQuan Harris (knee), and Abdou Ndiaye (knee) did not play last week due to injury. Yetna averaged 8.1 points and 7.6 rebounds per game last season.
  • Seton Hall is 80-11 (.879) all-time at the Prudential Center, against nonconference foes.
  • Coming off two wins, the Pirates shooting averages include 48.5 percent from the field, 35.1 percent from 3-point range, and 67.5 percent at the foul line.
  • Seton Hall currently leads the conference in five categories: bench points per game (46.0), field goal percentage defense (.287), free throw attempts per game (38.5), free throws made per game (26.0), scoring defense (48.0), and 3-point percentage defense (.159).
  • The Pirates return five players from last season’s team that won 21 games and earned a No. 8 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Kadary Richmond (8.8 ppg), Alexis Yetna (8.1 ppg) and Jamir Harris (7.9 ppg) are Seton Hall’s top returning scorers.
  • Shaheen Holloway is in his first season as head coach of Seton Hall after leading Saint Peter’s to the Elite Eight in last season’s NCAA Tournament. Holloway, a former associate head coach, was also a three-time All-BIG EAST honoree for the Pirates (1996-2000).


Iowa led start-to-finish in a 112-71 victory over North Carolina A&T last Friday evening on Mediacom Court at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City.

  • Iowa’s 112 points are its most in a game since 112 versus Northwestern on March 10, 2022.
  • Four Hawkeye starters netted double figures: Kris Murray (22), Patrick McCaffery (21), Payton Sandfort (17), and Filip Rebraca (12).
  • McCaffery’s 21 points are a new career high, besting his previous best of 19 versus Nebraska in 2021. Murray surpassed 20 points for the third time in his career.
  • Iowa committed just four turnovers, equaling the third fewest in a game by a Hawkeye team in the Fran McCaffery era and fewest since Nov. 29, 2021 at Virginia.
  • Payton Sandfort has made three 3-pointers in each of Iowa’s first two games.
  • Tony Perkins dished out a game-best six assists. The junior guard has had 5+ assists in each of Iowa’s first two contests.
  • Twelve Hawkeyes scored three points or more.
  • Iowa had scoring runs of 16-0, 11-0 and 10-0. The 11-point scoring spurt closed the first half. The Hawkeyes scored 16 straight points after North Carolina A&T made the first basket of the second half.
  • Iowa improved to 2-0 all-time against North Carolina A&T.


Iowa has two players who have made all of their free throws through two games. Kris Murray is 8-of-8, while Filip Rebraca is 7-of-7. Rebraca shot a 60 percent clip from the foul line last year.


Connor McCaffery is Iowa’s career leader in assist-to-turnover ratio, amassing a 3.5 ratio in 136 career games (414 assists; 118 turnovers), nearly 1.0 above second-place Andre Banks (2.53). His assist-to-turnover ratio last year was 5.0, while he ranked fourth nationally in 2021 with a 3.73 ratio. In 202, he led the country with a 4.6 ratio.


Junior Kris Murray was named to the 2023 Big Ten Preseason All-Big Ten Team and one of 20 candidates for the 2023 Karl Malone Award, which recognizes the top power forward in college basketball.

It marks the fourth straight season that one or more Hawkeyes have been selected to the preseason all-conference squad, voted upon by a selected panel of media. Joe Wieskamp was selected in 2019 and 2020, Luka Garza was tabbed the Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year in 2020, while Kris’ twin brother Keegan was recognized in 2021. Keegan was also the recipient of the 2022 Karl Malone Award.

Murray was Iowa’s leading scorer (9.7) and rebounder (4.3) off the bench last season. He improved his scoring average by 9.1 points and rebounding average by 3.7 per outing. The native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was second on the team in 3-point percentage (.397), blocks per game (0.9) and field goals made (124), third in offensive (1.6) and defensive (2.7) rebounds per contest, and fourth in steals (0.8) per game. Murray made at least one 3-pointer in a team-best 17 consecutive games (Jan. 22-March 13). He recorded multiple steals in 10 games and multiple blocks in nine contests. His 31 blocks and 43 triples rank seventh and eighth, respectively, by a Hawkeye sophomore. He shared the team’s Most Improved Player Award with Tony Perkins.

Murray is averaging a team-best 18 points per game this season, he has made all eight free throw attempts, and ranks second on the squad averaging 7.5 rebounds per outing.


  • The Hawkeyes will play back-to-back conference road games four times.
  • Iowa has a stretch of four straight home contests in December (ISU, Wisconsin, SE Missouri State and Eastern Illinois).
  • Iowa has seven weekend home contests (three on Saturdays and four on Sundays), including six against Big Ten opponents. The Hawkeyes have home games inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena on a Saturday or Sunday four of the final six weekends of the regular season.
  • The Hawkeyes have a stretch of four of five league home games in early January. Iowa will host Indiana (Jan. 5), Michigan (Jan. 12), Maryland (Jan. 15) and Northwestern (Jan. 18).
  • Iowa is scheduled to play at Penn State on New Year’s Day. The Hawkeyes have played on New Year’s Day 10 previous times, most recently in 2017, versus Michigan in Iowa City. Prior to 2017, Iowa’s last New Year’s Day contest was in 1946 versus Saint Louis. The last time the Hawkeyes played a road game on New Year’s Day was at Toledo in 1940.
  • Iowa has three trips to the Tri-State Area, traveling to New Jersey twice (Nov. 16 at Seton Hall and Jan. 8 at Rutgers) and New York once (Dec. 6 versus Duke at Madison Square Garden).
  • Iowa will play on Super Bowl Sunday for the fourth straight season and sixth time in eight years, playing its only regular season game against Minnesota in Minneapolis on Feb. 12.
  • Five of Iowa’s final eight league games will be on the road.


Iowa welcomes four new faces to the 2022-23 roster: Dasonte Bowen, Josh Dix, Dante Eldridge, and Amarion Nimmers.

Bowen and Dix are true freshman, hailing from Boston and Council Bluffs, respectively. Eldridge and Nimmers are non-scholarship student-athletes. Eldridge, a junior, is the son of assistant coach Courtney Eldridge.


After six seasons and multiple broken records, Jordan Bohannon has exhausted his collegiate eligibility. Bohannon is the program’s career leader in four statistical categories: assists (704), 3-pointers made (455), games played (179), and free throw percentage (.887, 370-417). He sank a school and Xfinity Center record 10 3-pointers at Maryland on Feb. 10, 2022. His 455 triples are the most in Big Ten history and 192 more than any other Hawkeye.

Connor McCaffery decided to utilize his COVID bonus year and return for his sixth season with the Hawkeyes.


  • With Iowa’s Big Ten Tournament win last March, McCaffery joined Hall of Fame coaches Rick Pitino, Bob Huggins, Eddie Sutton and Lefty Driesell as the only Division I coaches to lead teams to conference tournament titles in four or more different leagues.
  • Fran McCaffery has guided Iowa to 20 wins or more in eight of the last 10 seasons. He has led Iowa to Big Ten upper division finishes nine of the last 10 years. Iowa, Michigan State, and Wisconsin have each recorded a Big Ten-best nine first division finishes since 2013.
  • Fran McCaffery has coached a first-team All-Big Ten honoree seven of the last nine seasons. He has guided Iowa to 20+ wins seven of the last nine seasons and fifth place or better finishes in the Big Ten six of the last eight years.


Fran McCaffery has a couple changes to his staff following last season. Assistant Coach Kirk Speraw retired and Assistant Coach Billy Taylor left for a head coaching position at Elon. Replacing Speraw and Taylor are Courtney Eldridge and Matt Gatens. Eldridge was on staff the previous six seasons, most recently as director of player development and recruiting director. Gatens is a former Hawkeye and most recently was an assistant coach at Drake.

Tristan Spurlock, who played basketball at UCF, is the new Director of Player Development. Al Seibert’s title changed to Chief of Staff, while Kyle Denning is now the team’s Director of Operations.


Patrick McCaffery netted double figures in scoring 11 of the last 18 games played last season.

He made at least one 3-pointer in 12 of the last 18 games, including sinking multiple triples in six contests during that stretch.

McCaffery has carried that momentum over to his junior season, netting double figures and making multiple triples in each of Iowa’s first two games of the season. McCaffery’s 21 points scored against North Carolina A&T last Friday is a new personal best.


A number of recent Iowa basketball graduates are playing professionally: Keegan Murray (NBA Sacramento Kings), Luka Garza (G League Iowa Wolves), Jordan Bohannon (G League Iowa Wolves), Joe Wieskamp (G League Wisconsin Herd), Jarrod Uthoff (Japan), Devyn Marble (Poland), Tyler Cook (G League Salt Lake City Stars), Anthony Clemmons (Turkey), Gabriel Olaseni (Turkey), Ryan Kriener (Matsuyama), Melsahn Basabe (Nicaragua), and Aaron White (Serbia).