Iowa men’s basketball’s Patrick McCaffery out indefinitely to focus on mental health

The junior said recent anxiety has impacted his preparation and performance on the court.


Grace Smith

Iowa forward Patrick McCaffery walks toward his team after a timeout call during a men’s basketball game between Iowa and Wisconsin at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Sunday, Dec. 11, 2022. The Badgers defeated the Hawkeyes in overtime, 78-75.

Chris Werner, Assistant Sports Editor

Iowa men’s basketball junior forward Patrick McCaffery will be out indefinitely to focus on his mental health, Iowa men’s basketball said in a release Tuesday.

“I have been battling anxiety for a while, and recently it has peaked, which has inhibited my preparation and performance on the court,” Patrick McCaffery said in the release. “It’s not fair to myself or teammates to be on the court when I am not myself. The anxiety has affected my sleep, appetite, and stamina, which has resulted in not having the energy level necessary to compete at my full capabilities. My struggle with anxiety affects every aspect of my well-being and makes it incredibly difficult to function normally. This is what I am battling right now. For this reason, I am taking an indefinite leave to address my situation. It might be two games, it may be four games, it may be more, but I will return when I feel like myself.”

Patrick McCaffery noted his anxiety struggles are unrelated to his previous battle with thyroid cancer.

“Patrick is one of the millions of people who battle through anxiety on a daily basis,” Patrick’s father and Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “It has become more noticeable on and off the court over the past couple weeks. Patrick has the full support of his family, coaches, teammates, and administration as he fights through this. All of us admire his courage and willingness to be open about this struggle and we hope others know that they are not alone. We will be with him every step of the way.”

Patrick McCaffery is averaging a career-best 12.8 points per game this season and he had started in each of the Hawkeyes’ first 14 games this year.

Iowa will host No. 15 Indiana on Jan. 5 at 8 p.m.