Head Coach: Fran McCaffery
Location: Iowa City, IA
Coach's Nickname: White Magic
Mascot: Herky the Hawk
Last time out: Lost to Purdue
Typical Rotation Depth: 9+
Line: Nebraska by 2.5
Player to watch: Tyler Cook
The 6'9" 250 Cook is an absolute beast and in last year's loss to Nebraska put up 24 pts and 10 rebounds at the PBA. With Luka Garza questionable to play and a majority of their post players out for the year Cook tends to play less aggressively in the first half or if he's anywhere close to being in foul trouble. Cook is typically good at playing without picking up fouls and is also an excellent passer out of the post. He's not a 3pt threat.
Player to watch: Luka Garza
Garza is the starting center on the team but has been out for the last 3 games due to an ankle injury. When healthy he's one of the most aggressive scorers for Iowa and is capable of making 3s. It's a big deal if he can't play against a Nebraska team that can be hurt by traditional centers.
KenPom Helps explain the Roster
Iowa has one of the taller rosters in Div 1 as Bohannon is the only player under 6'5"
- Former walk-on Baer has been filling in at the 4. While undersized and the 5th scoring option he's efficient and sneaky shot blocker
- PG Bohannon has struggled with his 3pt shot this year and at points is a defensive liability. He's platooning with the coach's son Connor who really doesn't shoot 3s but draws a lot of fouls with his 6'5" length.
- Moss is capable of shouldering a decent amount of the scoring load. His backup Maishe Dailey has struggle to score this year.
- Wieskamp is one of the most efficient scorers from anywhere on the court and Palmer will have his hands full keeping track of him.
- 6'9" 255 Ryan Kriener is Iowa's version of Tanner Borchardt
Miles touched on shoring up the defensive rebounding which statistically is the most glaring deficiency on this team. He also talked about the team being angry which is a plus if they're still angry on Sunday.
The Skinny: After Iowa was absolutely rolled by Purdue, the Huskers find themselves favored heading into Iowa City in a game where both teams will be highly motivated to win. As tempting as it is to look at the lopsided loses vs Michigan St and Purdue and chalk this game up as a win, this Iowa team will play better at home like they've shown in a win vs Iowa St.
Like most McCaffery teams, this Iowa team doesn't foul a lot. Unlike most Iowa teams, this one currently leads Div 1 in FTA/FGA and thus a lot of their points are coming at the FT line. Nebraska has done a good job at not fouling this year but whomever is guarding Cook will be especially vulnerable. Iowa's rebounding ability is also a concern as teams have been abusing the Huskers on the offensive boards all year. Look for Nebraska to keep more bodies back to rebound at points against an Iowa defense that will break down in the half court. Speaking of slowing down you'll see Iowa throw a lot of zone at Nebraska including a 1-2-2 after made buckets.
Nebraska has responded well after each of their losses with blowout wins at home so expect Nebraska to be highly motivated today. Is Garza going to play? His size and skill set are a difference maker. Look for Nebraska to bounce back in a close one.
Prediction: Nebraska 80 - Iowa 77
Edited by hhcmatt