Expectations have returned for the Iowa basketball program and coach Fran McCaffery does not mind. In his second season at the helm, McCaffery led the Hawks to an 18-17 record and the second round of the NIT. As he travels the I-Club circuit this spring he is finding fans are hoping for even more next season.

“A lot of coaches try to temper the enthusiasm, you know don’t get too carried away, don’t jump quickly because we are still going to have a very young team,” McCaffery says. “But to be truthful, I welcome it. Because I think that’s what I said I was going to do and that’s what Hawk fans want. They’ve been great with us, we’ve had some stumbles.”

McCaffery says the talent level continues to build and that should translate to even more wins. He says he’s really excited about the incoming freshman class and the last two classes, which gives them a lot of talent.

McCaffery says the talent boost will be most evident on the defensive end of the court as he says their most visible weakness last year was their defense and being consistent. He says more depth, size and experience will help.

By Bob Fisher, KRIB, Mason City