Iowa Basketball’s Fast Start to the 2020-21 Season

The Hawkeyes are off to a fast start this season in basketball with a 4-0 record and sit at number three on the AP Poll and number three in the Coaches Poll. Iowa has been lights out in every performance so far this season beating every team by 27 points or more except for North Carolina.

Iowa’s star center, Luka Garza, has also started the season on fire averaging 34 points through his first three games. Garza declared for the 2020 NBA Draft his junior year of college but decided to go back to school for one more year to try to increase his projection. If Garza can keep putting up big numbers and build on his defensive ability; he will be a low first round to high second round prospect.

Number 16 North Carolina came into Carver Hawkeye Arena Tuesday, Dec. 8, looking to upset the Hawks on their home court, but Iowa came out strong with a 14 point lead at the beginning of the game. Heading into half-time, the Hawks were up 43-31. Late into the game North Carolina closed and eventually took the lead over Iowa by one point where they would switch back and forth for the next two minutes. Iowa finally took the lead back and held it with about 7 minutes of play left where they would come out on top 93-80. 

Luka Garza had a quiet showing putting up only 16 points the whole game, but that’s why there are five starters. Jordan Bohannon finished the game with 24 points knocking down seven three-pointers and helping Iowa remain undefeated.

Iowa will look to keep the ball rolling when they face unranked Iowa State Friday, Dec. 11, and unranked Northern Illinois Sunday, Dec. 13. 

The next major obstacle in the Hawks’ way is on Saturday, Dec. 19, where Iowa will be on the road against the number one Gonzaga Bulldogs.

Gonzaga is currently 3-0 and will be missing the rest of their games leading up to Iowa due to COVID-19. Iowa is the favorite to win the game, but it won’t be easy seeing how North Carolina was able to lock down Garza fairly well. 

This may be the best Iowa basketball team Coach McCaffery has been a part of in his ten years of coaching there. With a star center and an all-around fantastic ball movement team; the Iowa Hawkeyes can go very far this year, possibly taking the BIG 10 title and winning it all in March.

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