The U-N-I Panthers enter the final week of the regular season a game behind Missouri Valley leader Wichita State and need a victory Wednesday night over Bradley to stay in the hunt. U-N-I coach Greg McDermott says they can’t control their own destiny, but they have a lot of reasons to play strong.
Wednesday night’s game will be the final home game for senior class that includes Eric Crawford, John Little and Ben Jacobsen. McDermott says Jacobsen’s decision to sign as a junior and then as he went on to win a state championship as a senior, that validated the U-N-I program for other Iowa players.
U-N-I is back in the top-25 this week and stands 11-5 in the Valley and 22-6 overall. One of those losses was at Bradley. The Braves are 9-7 in the conference and 16-9 overall. McDermott says Bradley is playing their best basketball now.
Bradley has won three straight and coach Jim Les feels his team is in the thick of the post season hunt. He says it’s a great opportunity against a top 25 team. Les says he’s told his team they still have control of their destiny.
Les says he wants the players to relish the chance to play their way in. He says the need to enjoy that opportunity and lay it on the line and see what happens.