With only four days left until the start of Iowa basketball season, BHGP’s player previews continue with Iowa’s first grad transfer of Fran McCaffery’s tenure.
55: Luka Garza
51: Aidan Vanderloo
35: Cordell Pemsl
30: Connor McCaffery
24: Nico Hobbs
22: Pat McCaffery
20: Riley Till
15: Ryan Kriener
13: Austin Ash
10: Joe Wieskamp
5: C.J. Fredrick
4: Bakari Evelyn
Guard, 6’1”, 185 lbs.
Senior, Marion, IA (Linn-Mar)
When Jordan Bohannon committed to the Iowa Hawkeyes in the lead-up to the 2015-16 season, there was some discord in the comments as to his bona fides. I think Hawkeye Hodor was the best prognosticator of the bunch:
This is not the exact type of PG that Fran wants. He wants the kid with elite athleticism that can get in the lane and dump/dish.
That being said, the numbers say this kid can absolutely shoot. That kind of skill also has a way of opening up a defense for the pile of 6’4-6’8 athletic terror-monsters we will soon have roaming the wings.
While he wasn’t spot on about the terror-monsters on the wings, he pretty much nailed what Bohannon has become during his Hawkeye tenure. Through three years, he’s already got the most threes in Hawkeye history with 264 and he’s hit them at a 41.1% clip. He’s also turned into a pretty good point guard, with 471 assists, though that number peaked his sophomore year as he played more off the ball last season.
In back-to-back games last year, he took Iowa over the finish line against Indiana:
He wasn’t done against Indiana, and caught fire at the end of regulation into overtime:
Though Iowa petered out before the NCAA Tournament, Bohannon was able to finish strong with 31 points against Tennessee and Cincinnati. He finished with 11.6 points and 3.4 assists per game.
Offseason hip surgery does leave his 2019-20 season in doubt. After his performance last night, where he looked hesitant and sank just a single 3 off the bench, it’s clear it could go one of two (or three) ways:
- He plays in 30% of Iowa’s games (all must come in the first half of the season) but never feels right. He makes the decision to rehab throughout the remainder of the season and is granted a medical redshirt by the NCAA and returns for the 2020-21 season. It would follow in the footsteps of Iowa State’s Naz Mitrou-Long who had a similar injury in 2015.
- He plays past the first half of the season after feeling consistently well before, during, and after games. He makes his way back into the starting lineup and becomes the record-breaking force Hawkeye fans know him to be and goes down as one of the more beloved Hawks of recent iterations.
- Option 1 but the NCAA doesn’t grant the redshirt.
Please don’t pick option 3.
From what I saw last night, it looks like option 1 is the most likely. Fran McCaffery was consistent in his offseason rhetoric about playing Bohannon at only 100% (or as close as possible) for his senior season whether it is this year or next. That has changed in recent days - see above link - but J-Bo has been pretty clear he still has good days and bad.
But if #2 does play out, Iowa would have as good a shooting backcourt as they could ask for with one 44% shooter leaving (Isaiah Moss) if C.J. Fredrick’s display holds up. With Wieskamp poised for his star-turn, Bohannon is not required to carry the offensive load of season’s past. Hopefully such a circumstance would see his three-point percentage return to his career high of 43% in a more reserved role.
Otherwise, he’ll have another shot at this.