July 23, 2014

Iowa coach expects Big 10 to continue to be unpredictable

Iowa coach Fran McCaffery says in a tough Big Ten race you can expect to see more of the unexpected. The Hawkeyes improved to 2-4 in the league race on Saturday night with a victory over Wisconsin, just days after the Badgers posted a victory at then second ranked Indiana.

“In many respects that’s the beauty of watching this league and following it, because as good as the teams are at the top, the teams at the midpoint down are tremendous. As a result, you never really know what’s going to happen on any given day,” McCaffery says.

The Hawkeyes return to action Tuesday night with a visit to Ohio State. It will be the first game for Iowa forward Aaron White back in his home state. The sophomore is averaging 15 points and more than six rebounds in the last three games.

“As talented as he is — and he impacts the games in so many different ways — as he continues to get stronger, what you are going to see him do is expand his game offensively in terms of his ability to go off the dribble and finish plays at the basket,” McCafferey says. “As good as he is now, I think he’s got a chance to be really, really, special.”

McCaffery says to have a chance against the Buckeyes the freshman guard duo of Mike Gessell and Anthony Clemmons will need to handle the pressure of the Ohio State guard court led by junior Aaron Craft. He says they are playing a great team in a great environment and that will make it tough on Iowa’s guards.

Ohio State coach Thad Matta says the Buckeyes need to do a better job of protecting the basketball than they did in a 59-56 loss at Michigan State on Saturday.

Ohio State is 13-4 overall. Iowa is 13-5.