Basketball team

What the Hawkeye Men’s Basketball Team Knows Today: It’s Deep

Lots of off-season surgeries / health issues for Iowa

What the Hawkeye Men's Basketball Team Knows Today: It's Deep

Iowa forwards Keegan Murray (15) and Patrick McCaffery (22) defend Darius Beane (24) of northern Illinois as he looks to shoot during a men’s basketball game at the Carver- Hawkeye Arena on December 13, 2020 (Rebecca F. Miller / The Gazette)

In today’s era of college basketball, there’s a lot of time together.

From July 20 until the first day of fall classes, Division I players can train and prepare for the summer with mandatory activities not exceeding eight hours per week.

But when the Iowa men’s basketball team reconvenes on September 29 to train for the 2021-22 season which begins on November 8, it will be the first time everyone is ready to go. go at the same time. Probably.

Connor McCaffery (both hips), Joe Toussaint (ankle) and Ahron Ulis (wrist) underwent surgeries and rehabs during the offseason. Patrick McCaffery is recovering from a sprained ankle. Filip Rebraca had an illness that was not COVID-19. Kris Murray had a “nagging thing,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said on Monday.

“Every time someone gets sick,” McCaffery said, “you think to yourself, ‘Oh boy, I hope he doesn’t have COVID,’ and luckily that hasn’t happened yet. We’ve had a few guys who got sick and need to be tested, they were negative, the whole team is vaccinated so that helps.

What practicing without the full set this summer has strengthened, however, is that the Hawkeyes for the coming season have depth.

“At least you feel like you can absorb some of these injuries. Two years ago we had a very good team. We didn’t have a lot of depth. It hurt us, especially in a few road games that year. Because I thought this team was really special. I loved this team.

McCaffery has a lot of players. He also has a lot of players who will take on new roles or be forced on them more. Veteran guards Jordan Bohannon and Connor McCaffery will be joined by many players who either have two years or less of college playing experience, or are a senior transfer post player (Filip Rebraca, of South Dakota) joining a new squad. .

“We feel pretty good with our people and our depth,” said McCaffery. “This is possibly the greatest depth we have ever had.”

The coach knows what he has, he just had to figure out how to put it together.

“Determine the starting lineup, determine what the rotation will look like, are we going to play more guys,” he said. “We will increase the pace in defense, which will require more substitutions. It can be a good thing, but it can also be confusing if the guys aren’t settled in because they come in and out. That’s what the practice is for.

That’s also why the schedule begins with six home games against anyone likely to receive votes in the preseason Top 25. Iowa will face Virginia, Purdue and Illinois from Nov. 29 through Dec. 31. 6, however, so you’ll get a good idea of ​​what the Hawkeyes have before your Christmas shopping is done.

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