Iowa’s Jordan Bohannon nearing men’s Big Ten 3-point record

The sixth-year Hawkeye is four 3-pointers shy of tying former Ohio State men’s basketball player Jon Diebler’s conference record.


Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa guard Jordan Bohannon looks to pass during a men’s basketball game between Iowa and Minnesota at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021. The Hawkeyes defeated the Golden Gophers, 86-71.

Robert Read, Pregame Editor

Jordan Bohannon chuckled at the podium after the Iowa men’s basketball team’s season-opening win over Longwood when someone brought up the name Jon Diebler to him.

Diebler, a sharpshooter at Ohio State from 2007-11, holds the Big Ten men’s basketball record for most career 3-pointers (374). Bohannon, now in his sixth season with the Hawkeyes, hit six shots from beyond the arc in Iowa’s 106-73 win over Longwood on Tuesday, giving him 370 for his college career, only four short of Diebler’s mark.

If Bohannon has another hot shooting night, his name may be at the top of the leaderboard by the time Iowa’s game against Kansas City on Friday wraps up.

And, apparently, Diebler is quick to tease Bohannon about that.

“I actually was talking to someone the other day and they said they were talking about Diebler,” Bohannon said. “I guess he was giving me crap for, ‘He’s just coming back to break my record.’”

The former Linn-Mar High School standout is beginning his fifth full season with head coach Fran McCaffery’s program.

Bohannon received a medical waiver after only playing 10 games in 2019-20 because of a hip injury. Then, after the conclusion of last season, Bohannon decided to take advantage of an extra year of eligibility being provided by the NCAA because of the pandemic.

But even the most experienced player in Iowa’s backcourt is taking on a slightly new role this season. Unlike his first five seasons in Iowa City, Bohannon is primarily playing shooting guard this season— not point guard. The career 40.3 percent 3-point shooter is Iowa’s top returning scorer from last season’s team (10.6 points per game). Bohannon is the top shooter on a team that lost Luka Garza, Joe Wieskamp, and CJ Fredrick in the offseason — all of whom shot above 40 percent from deep last season.

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Despite losing so many shooters, Iowa hit 15 3-pointers on Tuesday.

Sophomore Keegan Murray hit three 3s against Longwood, showing an improved shooting touch from last season. Freshman Payton Sandfort already has the green light to shoot when he wants to shoot. But Bohannon is undoubtedly the best shooter on a team that’s shooting might not be as consistent this year.

“I don’t know if we’ll make 15 every night,” McCaffery said. “But I think we have enough 3-point shooting … We might have some nights where we aren’t making them and have to do some other things. But I do think we have a variety of guys who can stretch the floor.”

Bohannon isn’t a stranger to breaking records at this point. The 24-year-old is the Iowa men’s basketball program’s all-time leader in 3-pointers, assists, and games played. And even if Bohannon doesn’t surpass Diebler in Iowa’s 7:01 p.m. game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena — which will air on BTN+ — the record will almost certainly be broken soon enough. And he will have plenty of time to extend it over the rest of the regular season.

Diebler recently started working for the Charlotte Hornets of the NBA after wrapping up a decade-long professional career in Greece, Turkey, and Israel. Despite what Diebler may think, Bohannon didn’t come back to Iowa to break his record. Instead, he mainly did so to play in front of fans again and make a run at the NCAA Tournament.

But breaking the record won’t hurt.

“He was one of my heroes growing up,” Bohannon said of Diebler. “I loved watching him play at Ohio State. Guys like that are who made me into the basketball player I am today.”