IOWA CITY, Iowa - There has been an evolution to Jordan Bohannon’s game.
The Iowa senior guard reflected on that on Tuesday as he closes in on being the program’s all-time assist leader.
Bohannon had 610 assists, just two off the record set by Jeff Horner. At some point this weekend, likely in the Hawkeyes’ game at Michigan on Thursday, Bohannon will pass that mark.
A player who admitted he was just a good shooter when he got to high school has turned himself into a floor leader, a combination of scorer and distributor that he knew he needed to become.
“I realized when I got to college I could do a lot more things with the ball,” Bohannon said.
Bohannon and Horner are the only two players in program history to score 1,500 points or more and have 600 or more assists. Bohannon has had eight games with 10 or more assists in his career, also most in program history. He has 340 career 3-pointers, 34 off the Big Ten record set by Ohio State’s Jon Diebler.
The motivation, Bohannon said, comes from the doubts he has faced throughout his career.
“When I got here at Iowa, right from the start, as a freshman on campus, a lot of people doubted me being able to play at Iowa, or play at the Big Ten level,” Bohannon said. “I thought I had a pretty good freshman year, and I proved that I belonged.
“All of these added things kind of add to my fire to whether I can be a great leader of this team, whether that’s me scoring or me passing the ball. I just pride myself in being a great leader on the floor, trying to be as vocal as possible or getting guys into the right spots.”
“He’s an incredible player, and obviously a really good passer,” forward Joe Wieskamp said. “Credit to him, for the career he’s built, as kind of a guy who maybe wasn’t considered a point guard coming in, more of a guy who can shoot the ball. But he’s really proven a lot of people wrong in just the way he’s come here and attacked everything with such a good mindset. He’s really transformed his game and his body in this past year. Just the way he sees the floor and finds guys at the right time, it’s just incredible. He’s a lot of fun to play with.”
Bohannon has a 2.51 assist-to-turnover ratio for his career, and ranks second in the Big Ten this season with a 3.53 ratio.
“I always thought of myself as a great point guard, trying to continue to lead the team,” Bohannon said. “Being a great point guard means having a great assist-to-turnover ratio, knowing when to find guys that are hot. I think that’s a lost art of basketball.”
“It’s been a pleasure to have him at the helm, at the point-guard spot,” said center Luka Garza. “It’s been impressive, to say the least.”
Garza became the program’s all-time scoring leader with a layup in Sunday’s game against Penn State. The assist was a pass from Bohannon.
After the game, Bohannon said there’s “a story” behind every assist.
Going through 610 stories to find a favorite, though, was going to be a difficult task.
“There are just so many plays, I would have to have a lot of time to think about it,” Bohannon said.