If there was any question who the most important college basketball player in the eastern half of Iowa is this year, Randy Larson answered with an immediate first overall selection of Jarrod Uthoff in the 2015 Prime Time League, Iowa's summer league designed primarily to keep area players busy and local businesses involved in the whole process of the offseason.
Adam Woodbury was the next Iowa player off the board, and each of the seven
kingdoms teams ended up with a pair of current Hawkeyes on their rosters. Here's a breakdown of each, via intrepid reporter Chad Leistikow of the Des Moines Register:
Westport Touchless/Beat The Bookstore:
Jarrod Uthoff, Dom Uhl
The likely favorites. Uthoff and Uhl bring length and versatility, and a defense-optional league like the PTL means Uthoff won't encounter any trouble getting buckets. Also in the mix is incoming UNI point guard Aarias Austin, a juco transfer from DMACC.
Jill Armstrong Realty:
Adam Woodbury, Okey Ukah
Adam Woodbury is listed at 7'1", but I walked past him in Iowa City recently and he is easily eight feet tall. Easily. He should dominate here. Ukah was this team's seventh-round pick so if he turns into a major contributor, something will have gone wrong.
Marion Iron Company:
Brady Ellingson, Andrew Fleming
Head coach Jess Settles—who could probably lace 'em up and drop a double-double on these fools, like, today—went the "Splash Brothers" route with these two shooters. Settles' first-round pick was UNI guard (and noted Hawkeye killer) Wes Washpun, and also on the team is Turkish pro team TED Kolejliler's very own Matt Gatens, who local sports fans may have heard of.
Dale Jones, Brandon Hutton
This'll be most Iowa fans' first looks at incoming JUCO transfer Jones and freshman forward Hutton, and we'll get our first sense of whether either player's game translates immediately well to Iowa's level of competition. Former Hawkeyes Melsahn Basabe and Jason Price (remember him?) are also on the squad, as is Paul Jesperson of UNI, the team's first pick.
Anthony Clemmons, Nick Baer
Clemmons was an easy first-round selection for the team, though taking walk-on Baer in the third round may have been a bit of a stretch. I guess you could say they got the Baer minimum of Hawkeyes on this team!
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Comfort Care Medicare/LL Pelling:
Mike Gesell, Christian Williams
In the year 2067, the polar ice caps will have melted, the Cyber-Apocalypse will have decimated the economy and the Great Arboreal Revolt will have pitted humans and trees in epic mortal combat... and 73-year-old Mike Gesell will still be burying long jumpers over fools in the Prime Time League. Gesell is a PTL monster. Just look up "Mike Gesell PTL" on YouTube and there's several mixtapes from over the years (like, this one from 2013 is five minutes long). I don't know how he almost made it out of the first round without being picked. Williams is a new face, and we'll see what skills he brings to the table as part of a crowded freshman class.
Peter Jok, Ahmad Wagner
And speaking of PTL legends, the Human Green Light himself, Peter Jok was the top pick of MYSTERY TEAM (okay, they just didn't get a sponsor, they don't all wear masks and play in black-lit gyms like Cosmic Bowling) (but they absolutely should) (please make this happen PTL). Jok is arguably the perfect PTL player, hoisting bombs from all over the court and playing a level of defense best described as "cursory." Wagner is the third of the freshman forward troika, and again we'll see what he does better than the other two as he establishes himself in the Hawkeye rotations.