Pat Harty of the Iowa City Press-Citizen had a good item over the weekend on the number of quality prospects in the state of Iowa’s Class of 2012 with regards to basketball…in that it could be historic.
We’ve known for some time now that there has been a lot of talent in this class, but we are talking about the kind of talent that Van Coleman of Hoopmasters.com says he’s never seen in one class in the three decades he’s been covering stuff like this.
To this end, people have been focusing on this spring signing period that ends on Wednesday; is Iowa going to sign any players? Fran McCaffery has said that he wouldn’t rule out two, likely one, but that was a few weeks ago. Iowa needs another point guard. They went through one season with just one of them last year in Cully Payne. I don’t care who you are, you need more than one point guard. Three in the program would be great, or three players that can handle that role. Iowa has one…repeat, Iowa has one. Junior college guard Anthony Salter had seemed like a promising possibility; a player that was going to take two years, and not lock up a ride that could go to a class of 2012 prospect and give you the minutes you needed during the rebuilding process. After he visited Iowa last week, things turned less than positive when announced he’d be taking a visit to Hawaii. At that point, Iowa started to look in other directions, something I posted on the message boards after I had spoken with a source I have that is in tune with things taking place this spring.
Someone that is not a regular source for me sent me an email saying they had spoken with one of the Iowa assistants at an I-Club event last week and the coach said they had moved on from Salter. Then on Sunday, word broke that Salter had committed to Hawaii.
Junior college guard Coco Ware is waiting on an Iowa offer, and Rob Howe from HawkeyeInsider.com wrote on Sunday that Ware is willing to commit to Iowa. Iowa is taking a hard look at him, perhaps harder now with their taking their sights off Salter…Ware is also an interesting prospect, in that he has just one year of eligibility, although Howe reported that he will be looking to appeal for an extra year. (here is the link to the article, it requires a subscription to read it)
On the surface, that doesn’t seem like a big deal for this rebuilding process; he wouldn’t occupy a scholarship any more than the next 12 months, but you can also fill that ride this fall…and therein lies a bit of a rub…
Marcus Paige is a point guard from Cedar Rapids that is a member of the Class of 2012 that Iowa defnitely wants to don the black and gold…but it’s going to be tough to keep this kid at home, with offers from the likes of Illinois and others.
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Payne will be a senior when Paige is a freshman…a perfect handoff situation…and yes, you need more than one point guard, so Iowa would need to add another. But if you take a point guard this fall, would that have an effect on how Paige views Iowa the following fall? You’d hope not, because when he looks at other schools, they are going to have more than one point guard on their roster…but if Iowa would get a two-year Juco point guard this spring, it would be a real nice recruiting fit.
If I had to place a wager, I’d say that Ware gets the offer and is at Iowa next year…and while it’s next to impossible to predict what the NCAA will do with petitions for extra years of eligibility, Iowa State’s Marques Gilstrap was a one-year and done player this past year.
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If chicks dig the long ball, then they will dig Bryan Bulaga up in Green Bay. The former Iowa offensive lineman and first round draft pick of the Green Bay Packers took some batting practice before a Milwaukee Brewers game on Saturday night…what ensued was an impressive performance…several tape measure, upper deck home run shots from the big fella. Who knew? LINK
You knew I couldn’t go an entire Mashup without mentioning Big Ten Expansion, right? Here is an article from the Wall Street Journal on the Big Ten taking a look at Rutgers. Here’s another item from the Council Bluffs paper that talks about how nice an annual Iowa vs Nebraska football game would be, another on how a move to the Big Ten would affect Nebraska, another on how the fate of the Big East rests in the Big Ten’s hands and finally an item from Dennis Dodd of CBS that takes a shot at Iowa State not once, but twice. Now that’s not nice, Dennis.
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This article details some of the aspects of Gary Barta’s recent head coaching search, documenting phone calls that went to Tom Davis, Keno Davis, BJ Armstrong, when he called the Parker Search firm, when he might have told Todd Lickliter that change was coming, and more.
Lastly, there are 110 days until Iowa kicks off its football season…Phil Steele’s magazine will hit news stands on June 8th…Athlon and all of the others will be out around that time too…Athlon is up to #13 in it’s preseason Top 25 countdown reveal process…no sign of the Hawkeyes just yet.