IOWA WINS AT NUMBER 3 OHIO STATE. THAT HAPPENED. GO IOWA AWESOME. YOU KNOW WHAT TIME IT IS.
God, where do we begin? We can begin when the Hawkeyes turned the entire game around, a three-point barrage that erased a seven-point deficit in the matter of three plays. After starting the game 1-10 from behind the arc, Iowa got consecutive threes from Mike Gesell, Aaron White and Jarrod Uthoff to tie the game at 55-55. Ohio State took the lead back and kept Iowa at bay until less than five minutes remained, but the Hawkeyes were absolute monsters down the stretch.
And man, that stretch. Iowa had to make its free throws in the dying moments, and the Hawkeyes responded by going 12-for-14 from the line after the under-four time out. Iowa's experiences at the free throw line in crunch time, hostile situations have been largely negative this season, so getting this monkey off the back is not only rewarding, it's a huge relief.
This Iowa team now has experience closing out a monster road win. And make no mistake, this is one of the biggest wins of the season in all of college basketball. Going to Columbus, getting a legitimately good game from the Buckeyes and still winning is a rare, rare feat.
Yes. RT @Rob_Ogden The "OSU didn't want you" chant to Cleveland native Aaron White, who had 19 & 6 in Iowa win is incredibly stupid.— Tony Gerdeman (@GerdOzone) January 12, 2014
Roy Devyn Marble was the more obvious man of the match, with 22 points on 7-13 (8-11) shooting, to say nothing of (deep breath) four rebounds, three assists, three steals, two blocks and three turnovers. He was the man that made Iowa's offense go on Sunday, and the team has a borderline historic win to show for it.
Let's also give kudos to Aaron White, who matched the above stats with an energy that Ohio State struggled to contain all game long. He only got to the free throw line twice—thanks, Big Ten refs—but he was a major factor.
Lastly, for all of Ohio State's prowess on defense and the earned reputation it brings into every game, let us not lose sight of the fact that Iowa utterly neutralized Aaron Craft on Sunday. The "feisty" (see: fouly) point guard actually fouled out late in the game, and he took with him a six-point, five-turnover stat line. And if you want to talk about how his contributions don't show up on the stat sheet, wellllll...
Ohio State was Kenpom's #1 defense in the nation at 0.85 adjusted points per possession this season. Iowa averaged 1.15. ON THE ROAD.— Matt (@TitoHwk) January 12, 2014
Iowa shook off an 0-8 (0-5 3) performance from Zach McCabe (who has struggled mightily since the Iowa State defeat) to still shoot 29-61 (5-17 3) from the field, which is a great way to hit 1.15 PPP. They were largely good looks from McCabe, looks that'll go down another day. The last thing you want is him not taking those shots when they present themselves going forward; that's how offenses grind to unproductive, unsure halts. Luckily, McCabe's not exactly down on himself:
Yo I don't care what people say I may have shot bad but we got the W... I love my team and Iowa and I'm never gonna stop fighting!! #GoHawks— Zach McCabe (@ZMcCabe15) January 12, 2014
What a great win. What an absolutely, incontrovertibly great win. It was satisfying, relieving, rewarding and amazing. I could hug you all and maybe kiss you on the mouth. Or wherever it's not weird to you. Franball is here to stay. GO IOWA AWESOME.