Hy-Vee Classic ending in 2018

The Hy-Vee Classic, the basketball competition that brings together all four major men’s programs in the state, will not continue after this upcoming season.


The Daily Iowan; Photo by Ben Al

Iowa's Tyler Cook (5) shoots the ball over Drake's Kory Kuenstling (32) during the Hy-Vee Classic men's basketball tournament at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines on Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. The Hawkeyes beat the Bulldogs 90-64. (Ben Allan Smith/The Daily Iowan)

2018 will mark the last year of the Hy-Vee Classic, the University of Iowa announced on June 14.

Since 2012, Iowa, Iowa State, Northern Iowa, and Drake have met in Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines to square off in the Hy-Vee Classic. However, because of the expansion of conference games, the games will fizzle out.

“In our last agreement, we added language that provided each institution an opportunity to opt out of the remainder of the contract if they reached 22 required games by the conference,” said Iowa Athletics Director Gary Barta in a release. “The addition of two conference games is good for our fans, the Big Ten Conference, and our strength of schedule, but unfortunately, it created some scheduling challenges that impact this event.”

Iowa is set to square off against Northern Iowa (with Iowa State clashing with Drake) for the final Hy-Vee Classic, but neither the Panthers nor the Bulldogs are on future Hawkeye basketball schedules. Iowa and Iowa State will continue their Cy-Hawk Series.

Major conference and schedule changes have occurred since the Hy-Vee Classic’s conception in 2012. For the Hawkeyes, their Big Ten slate expanded with Maryland and Rutgers joining competition, and they also had an added ACC opponent in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Additionally, the Missouri Valley had Wichita State and Creighton exit, but added Valparaiso and Loyola.

“We truly appreciate the support of the fans in central Iowa, the Wells Fargo Arena staff, and Hy-Vee for its commitment to this event,” Barta said in a release. “As we have in the past, the Hawkeyes will continue to evaluate playing in-state schools on a sport-by-sport, case-by-case basis.”

Last season, Iowa toppled Drake, 90-64. Tyler Cook scored 23 points to lead the Hawkeye offense, while Jordan Bohannon added 15, and Nicholas Baer tallied a double-double (11 points, 14 rebounds).

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