IOWA CITY, Iowa – A calmness surrounds Connor McCaffery. The Iowa City West point guard believes things will work out.
The four-year starter just had wrapped up his senior night here Thursday with a 58-46 victory against Cedar Rapids Xavier. He reflected on the season and his career while looking ahead to his future – an uncertain one.
McCaffery has options. Good ones. Maybe that’s why he’s relaxed. Or, maybe it’s just his easy-going nature.
The son of Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery committed to the Hawkeyes as a freshman. Then he watched fellow seniors Luka Garza and Jack Nunge snatch up the program’s two available scholarships in this class. He welcomed it. He helped recruit them. He wanted what was best for the team like a true point guard.
Connor told HN Thursday that as of right now his next school year could go one of three ways. Another scholarship could open up at Iowa with a transfer or injury, he could walk-on as a freshman or he could attended prep school.
“I’m just waiting this out,” said McCaffery, who led all scorers with 19 points Thursday. “I’ve applied to Iowa. I’m just waiting to see what happens with the team. I have a lot of options and at this point there’s nothing rushing me.
“I’m having fun watching my dad’s team play so I’m not too worried about it. I’m more of a fan right now than a recruit and that’s OK.”
Heading into Thursday’s game, McCaffery was leading the Trojans in scoring at 19.5 points per game. He was shooting 52.5 percent from the floor, including 42.7 percent on three-pointers. He also paced the team in assists (3.7) and was second in rebounding (4.4).
“I think that I’ve made improvements pretty much everywhere. My three-point percentage is a lot better. I’m shooting really well,” he said.
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The West High roster lists McCaffery at 6-6. And, he’s not skinny.
“Ever since I was a freshman I was more physical at a younger age so I was able to handle that. That’s something I really tried to hit hard in the off-season in the weight room. I think that it shows,” he said.
The strength aids McCaffery in his other athletic endeavor. He’s an all-state baseball player and plans to participate in two sports in college.
As a junior, McCaffery led state runner-up West with a 1.37 OPS, eight homers, 33 RBI and 42 runs while stealing eight bases in nine attempts. He had four assists with just one error in right field.
In the fall, McCaffery played with Perfect Game. He attended a showcase in Florida.
“It’s a great experience. There are major league scouts. You’re playing against the best. You’re facing guys that are throwing 91, 92 (miles per hour). It only gets you better. I played well this fall for the most part and hopefully that leads into a good high school season,” he said.
Before he steps back on the field, McCaffery has unfinished business on the court. After winning a state title as a freshman in ’14, the Trojans lost by six points in the semifinals two years ago and by seven in the championship game last winter.
McCaffery came in to high school by winning it all and would like to go out on top.
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“I would be speechless. It would mean the world. I can’t think of anything I want more. I’m going to do everything I can for my team and I know everybody else is, too. I think that’s just the kind of team that we have. I think everything we do is going to be to try to get to that game and win,” he said.
Patrick McCaffery, a sophomore and Connor’s younger brother, agrees. He and the rest of the underclassmen want to help send the seniors out in memorable fashion.
“We have to make sure we end it with a bang the way we’re supposed to,” he said.
Here’s out full interview with Connor McCaffery: