New Iowa coach Todd Lickliter gets his first taste of the in-state series Wednesday night when the Hawkeyes visit UNI. With the Big Ten going to an 18-game schedule Lickliter has said he would like to have more flexibility in scheduling but does not rule out playing UNI, Drake and Iowa State on an annual basis.
Lickliter says he doesn’t have the answer as he hasn’t been at Iowa long enough to know. He says there may be a better option, but he doesn’t know, and this may be the best option right now.
UNI is 6-1 and already owns an in-state victory, 61-48 at Iowa State last week. Lickliter says he’s been very impressed with the Panthers as he says they have two very good big players and the other players compliment them. Lickliter says one of the keys to UNI’s success is the way they play. He says they have good coaching and says they have a good feel for what the coaches want, and have a willingness to learn.
The Panthers are 6-1 and this will be the first time they have hosted Iowa in the McLeod Center. Panther coach Ben Jacobsen says it’s a “big time arena” and they are excited to be able to play the game there. UNI is coming off a 61-50 win over Loyala of Chicago and Jacobsen expect another hard fought, defensive contest.
Jacobsen says they will have to take care of the basketball and make sure they maximize their trips at the offensive end and expect a tough, hard nose defensive game. The Panthers won last year’s matchup in Iowa City and with the Hawkeyes off to a 5-4 start UNI is heavily favored in this contest. Jacobsen says the
Panthers don’t feel like it. He says Iowa is so good defensively, that his team will have to take advantage of anything they can to score.