The Iowa Hawkeyes play their first game without leading scorer Pierre Pierce on Saturday when they host Michigan State. At 3-4 in the Big Ten the Hawks will try to re-group against a Spartan team that has won 12 of the last 15-games in the series. Iowa coach Steve Alford says Mike Henderson will be in the starting lineup and says it will be a tall order for Henderson. Alford says the coaches will have to coach better and the players will have to coach better. Alford expects his team to respond to the challenge. He says the team has practiced well all week and they’re healthy going into the game. He says they face the 10th ranked team so it will be a tall order with or without Pierce. Alford says if the players step it up, then they’ll have a special year, if they don’t then they’ll have a bad year. Pierce’s asbsence puts more pressure on junior co-captains Jeff Horner and Greg Brunner. Alford says they’ll fight and show up and give everything they’ve got. Iowa is 15-5 overall.
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