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Beginning Monday, June 21st, 2004 CHN began unveiling 144 Team previews in 144 Days. CHN ranked the nations top 144 teams, and is unveiling one per day leading up until the opening day of the 2004-05 Season.

 

Bookmark the 144 Teams in 144 Days home page, and check back each day to see which team is previewed next.



#55 Iowa Hawkeyes
Big Ten
2003-04: 16-13, 9-7, 4th
2003-04 postseason: NIT

By
Joel Welser



Steve Alford’s team missed out on the big dance and lost a tough game in the first round of the NIT last year.  A very talented backcourt returns in Pierre Pierce and Jeff Horner, but the some new faces will have to help Greg Brunner in the frontcourt. 

Who’s Out: Brody Boyd scored 11.1 points per game and was the senior leader on last years team.  Jared Reiner averaged 10.5 points and 7.2 rebounds, but only played in 13 games for the Hawkeyes.  Sean Sonderleiter was another strong option under the basket.  The 6-9 center averaged 5.4 points and 4.4 boards per contest, but only played in 17 games.  Reiner and Sonderleiter would make an impact, but Iowa played much of last season without them anyway.  Glen Worley, a 6-7 forward, averaged 8.1 points and 4.5 rebounds during his senior campaign.  Ben Rand saw very limited minutes and is transferring to Northern Illinois.  Nick DeWitz showed some promise early in the year, but eight games into the season he decided to transfer.  DeWitz will be eligible to play for Oregon State midway through the upcoming season.  Kurt Spurgeon only averaged 5.4 minutes in 19 outings as a senior.

Who’s In: Steve Alford went after some big guys to replace Reiner, Sonderleiter and Worley.  Seth Gorney is the biggest of the bunch at 7-0 and 245 pounds.  Gorney averaged over 21 points and 12 rebounds as a senior in high school.  He shot an incredible 75.3% from the floor last season.  Alex Thompson is a 6-9, 215 pound power forward.  Thompson can run the floor quite well for a guy his size and has decent range on his jumper.  Doug Thomas signed with Iowa two years ago, but had to take the juco route.  The 6-8 California native is finally headed to Iowa City.  Thomas is athletic and a great leaper and should be a fun one to watch.  His experience at Southeastern Community College in Iowa should have him prepared to make an immediate impact for the Hawkeyes.  Justin Wieck, another junior college transfer, will provide more depth at the small forward position.  Swingman J.R. Angle averaged 27.3 points, 11.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists as a senior in high school.  He’ll be a major option off the bench.  Shooting guard Carlton Reed is a solid player who was named ‘Mr. Basketball’ in the state of Iowa.  The deep guard play will keep Reed on the bench more then he should be, but he’ll make a much bigger impact in the years to come.  Adam Haluska redshirted last year after transferring from Iowa State.  In the 2002-2003 season, the 6-5 guard was named to the Big 12 All Freshman team.  Haluska should be starting along side Pierce and Horner in the backcourt. 

Who to Watch: This will be Greg Brunner’s frontcourt.  He won’t have any problems being to the go to guy under the basket.  As a sophomore last year, Brunner averaged 10.9 points and 8.2 rebounds.  Those 8.2 boards were good enough for second in the conference.  The 6-7, 240-pounder can battle with anybody on the glass and even has a decent jumper.

Projected Conference Rank: Fourth place in the conference last year wasn’t good enough to make it to the NCAA Tournament, but 6th place this year very well could put them on the bubble.  The frontcourt will be fine with Brunner and the newcomers.  Watch out for junior center Erek Hansen, who averaged just 11.5 minutes in 22 games last year.  He is ready to see an increased role.

Projected Post-season Tournament: NIT
 

 

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Email Joel Welser: jwelser_chn@ameritech.net

Chat About CHN's Top #144 Ranking: http://pub14.ezboard.com/fcollegehoopsnetfrm8

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