Returners ready to step up for Iowa men’s basketball

Iowa men’s basketball lost several key contributors from last season’s team over the offseason. Luckily for Iowa, it has players ready to step up.

Iowa+forward+Ryan+Kriener+poses+for+a+portrait+during+Basketball+Media+Day+at+Carver-Hawkeye+Arena+on+Wednesday%2C+October+9%2C+2019.+The+Hawkeyes+will+open+their+season+on+November+4%2C+2019+against+Lindsey+Wilson+College+in+their+exhibition+game.+%28Katina+Zentz%2FThe+Daily+Iowan%29
Back to Article
Back to Article

Returners ready to step up for Iowa men’s basketball

Iowa forward Ryan Kriener poses for a portrait during Basketball Media Day at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, October 9, 2019. The Hawkeyes will open their season on November 4, 2019 against Lindsey Wilson College in their exhibition game. (Katina Zentz/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Ryan Kriener poses for a portrait during Basketball Media Day at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, October 9, 2019. The Hawkeyes will open their season on November 4, 2019 against Lindsey Wilson College in their exhibition game. (Katina Zentz/The Daily Iowan)

Katina Zentz

Iowa forward Ryan Kriener poses for a portrait during Basketball Media Day at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, October 9, 2019. The Hawkeyes will open their season on November 4, 2019 against Lindsey Wilson College in their exhibition game. (Katina Zentz/The Daily Iowan)

Katina Zentz

Katina Zentz

Iowa forward Ryan Kriener poses for a portrait during Basketball Media Day at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, October 9, 2019. The Hawkeyes will open their season on November 4, 2019 against Lindsey Wilson College in their exhibition game. (Katina Zentz/The Daily Iowan)

Robert Read, Assistant Sports Editor

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Iowa men’s basketball is back, but many of the team’s key contributors from last season are not. Tyler Cook, Isaiah Moss, and Nicholas Baer won’t be running out of the tunnel at

Carver-Hawkeye this season after all three players departed the program.

Jordan Bohannon is also recovering from hip surgery, and his status for this season is still up in the air.

The Hawkeyes were an overtime period away from a Sweet 16 berth to end the 2018-19 season, they and will need new playmakers to step up to build off that success.

“It’s a much different team than I think we had thought it might be,” Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “I kind of thought we’d lose Cook, knew we were going to lose Baer, expected to have Jordan. Felt like we had enough depth with Isaiah’s departure. But you have essentially three new players and three players sitting out, so six new bodies.”

Among Iowa’s key returning players are guards Bohannon and Connor McCaffrey, center Luka Garza, and forwards Ryan Kriener and Joe Wieskamp.

Aside from that core group, many Hawkeyes will see significant playing time for the first time this season.

“I was looking around [at practice], and people say that we’re a veteran team and we only have the three newcomers, but we were looking around, and there wasn’t a lot of guys that were playing last year,” Kriener said. “I was sitting out [of practice], Jordan was sitting out. The only guys on the court who played last year were Luka, [Wieskamp], and maybe someone else, but it was a whole different team.”

With all the newcomers to the program expected to see time on the court this season, it’s important that those who have been around Iowa basketball for several years help lead the way.

Garza was Iowa’s second-leading scorer and third-leading rebounder last season. He saw his play on the court improve in his second year as a Hawkeye and wants to make another jump as a junior.

“After last year I felt like it was time for me to step into that new role as a vocal leader in the locker room that guys could go to,” Garza said. “Which is kind of what Tyler and Nicholas were, and that’s what Jordan still is for us. Whether he plays or not, he is a good presence in our locker room.

“Guys like me, Jordan, Ryan, and even Joe Wieskamp can just try and step up in that way, and I’ve definitely taken it upon myself to make sure I do.”

True freshmen Patrick McCaffery and Joe Toussaint are among the new faces within the program, as is graduate transfer Bakari Evelyn. Those three players haven’t spent much time donning the Black and Gold, but they have already made an impact.

“I love our freshman,” Garza said. “Joe and Patrick have done so well over the summer and the spring and the fall. They’re really fitting right in. Bakari brings so much experience from the schools he has been at. He’s a shooter, and he can handle the ball as well. All of those guys have a lot to give us this year, and they will.”

Facebook Comments