BASKETBALL

Hawkeyes Dominate Huskers, In Line for Double Bye

Jordan Bohannon hits eight three's, scores 26 points in 25 minutes as Iowa cruises

First, some notes from Iowa Sports Information on 102-64 Iowa win over Nebraska:

  • The 102 points and 38-point margin of victory are the largest points total and margin of victory in the 35-game series history.
  • Iowa’s 102 points are the most Iowa has scored in a Big Ten game since a 116-77 win against Northwestern on Feb. 8, 1995.
  • Tonight’s 38-point victory is Iowa’s largest margin in a conference game since a 39-point win over Northwestern (116-77) on Feb. 8, 1995.
  • Iowa has won six of its last seven games.
  • The Hawkeyes have held seven of the last eight opponents to fewer than 70 points.
  • Iowa has won 10 Big Ten games by double digits, the most in a single season in five years (10 in 2015-16).
  • Jordan Bohannon finished tonight’s contest with a season-best 26 points, netting 20+ points for the 20th time in his career and third time this season. Bohannon tied a career high with eight 3-pointers (at Maryland, 2017). Bohannon’s scoring totals from tonight move the redshirt senior past Dean Oliver and in a tie with Adam Haluska for 11th in career scoring at Iowa.
  • Luka Garza tallied 14 points, eight rebounds, and a game-best four blocks in only 24 minutes of action. Garza’s eight rebounds moved the senior past Ed Horton for fourth in Iowa career rebounding (879).
  • Iowa drained 16 triples, its second highest total in a game this season (17 vs. North Carolina).
  • Redshirt freshman Patrick McCaffery posted career bests in scoring (19), rebounds (6), and 3-pointers made (3).
  • Redshirt junior Connor McCaffery dished out a game-best eight assists.
  • Iowa has won 13 of the last 14 games against Nebraska in Iowa City, dating back to 1943.

JON’S TAKE:  I couldn’t tell if Iowa’s defense was really as good as the scoreboard showed, or if Nebraska’s offense was just really inept.  It was probably a mix of both, but since losing at Ohio State on February 4th, Iowa has a Top Ten offense AND defense relative to efficiency ratings, nationally.  They are the only team in the country to be able to say that.

For the season, Iowa’s offensive efficiency ratings is 2nd in the nation and they are up to a season-best in defensive efficiency at 56th in the country, per Ken Pomeroy.  Iowa remains the best team in the nation in turnover percentage (fewest turnovers out of 100 possessions) and they are the 5th best three-point shooting team in the nation, all games, at 39.9%.

As mentioned above, Iowa has won seven of their last eight games after losing four out of five.  The Hawkeyes are peaking at the right time, or at least, that is what the old adage talks about doing and the Hawkeyes are there.  No Iowa starter played more than 25 minutes in this game.

Patrick McCaffery flashed some signs of things to come and once he learns to finish at the rim, which will be aided by another offseason in the weight room, he could be a problem.  Keegan Murray scored eight and had two blocks, and he is already a problem for opposing teams.

As has been the case for the past two months, CJ Fredrick’s leg is something to watch, as he played just nine minutes before leaving with an injury late in the first half and there was no reason for him to return to the court as Iowa led by 22 at the break.

I said after the Ohio State game that if Joe Toussaint played the rest of the way like he did against the Buckeyes, that the Hawkeyes were a likely Elite Eight team.  Joe T scored four, had four boards, four assists and three steals on the night but that is not representative of how disruptive he was on both ends.  That’s two very good games in a row for Iowa’s waterbug, and they need him to play like this.

If Iowa wins on Sunday, they are the three-seed.  There is a chance they could clinch a double bye position on Saturday, depending on what happens around the Big Ten.

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