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Iowa Basketball: Week 7 Weekend Watch Guide

It’s a weekend full of NFL playoffs and college hoops.

NCAA Basketball: Iowa State at Texas
Can West Virginia do what Iowa State couldn’t?
Austin American-Statesman-USA TODAY NETWORK via Imagn Content Services, LLC

With college football officially in the rearview mirror, Iowa Hawkeye fans can fully devote their collegiate attention to basketball for the next several months. While that obviously means tuning in to all of Iowa’s games, it also means being aware of other games going on around the country. This is, after all, an Iowa team with its sights set on winning not just a Big Ten Championship, but also a National Championship.

So, each week until Selection Sunday, we’ll be highlighting games to watch every weekend with a tie in to our Hawkeye rooting interests.

Here’s what to watch in week 7 of the college basketball season.

Friday Night

Friday night is a little light on college hoops. There’s only one game featuring a top-25 team after Villanova’s matchup with Marquette was postponed. That features #23 Michigan State hosting Purdue at 6pm CT on FS1. Hawkeye fans should be pulling for Purdue in this one for a couple reasons. Obviously, Michigan State always finishes strong, but they started the year with three Big Ten losses. Another one and they will find themselves in a really tough spot to win the regular season conference title.

Beyond the loss of Michigan State, a win for Purdue would help to bump them up in the NCAA’s NET rankings. As highlighted in the weekly bracketology update, Purdue is currently a quadrant 2 victory for Iowa. They need to climb 16 spots in the NET rankings to make it into quadrant 1. A win over MSU would put them well on their way.

Unfortunately, there are no other Big Ten games on Friday night.


Saturday is chalk full of college hoops action. One of the most meaningful for the Hawkeyes, featuring #10 Michigan at Penn State, has already been postponed. The only othe Big Ten game on the schedule this week features Ohio State at #15 Rutgers (11am CT on BTN). With the Scarlet Knights well inside the threshold for dropping out of a Q1 win, it’s probably worth rooting for the Buckeyes here to potentially give Rutgers their fourth Big Ten loss of the year.

The other key game of consequence for Iowa fans features #4 Texas at #14 West Virginia (noon on ESPN). The Longhorns made a big jump in the rankings last week after taking down Kansas and now sit as a projected 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. With Iowa just behind them in both the rankings and potential seeding, Hawkeye fans should be all in on the Mountaineers on Saturday.

Other games worth watching on Saturday (team to root for bolded):

  • St. John’s at #7 Creighton - 11am on FS1
  • #9 Tennessee at Texas A&M - 1pm on ESPN2
  • #2 Baylor at TCU - 2pm on ESPN
  • Tulane at #11 Houston - 3pm on ESPNU
  • #18 Texas Tech at Iowa State - 3pm on ESPN2
  • Oklahoma at #6 Kansas - 3:30pm on CBS
  • #19 Clemson at North Carolina - 6pm on ESPN


Obviously, the most important game of the weekend features your #5 Iowa Hawkeyes hosting the #16 Minnesota Golden Gophers. That’s a 1:30pm CT tip on BTN. But outside Iowa’s own game, there are also two other Big Ten games on the day. The first features Indiana at Nebraska, which is of little consequence. The other is Maryland at #12 Illinois (7pm on BTN). Iowa should be rooting for the Terrapins here.

Outside the Big Ten, there are really no other game of significance to Hawkeye fans on Sunday. There are only two other games featuring top-25 teams but neither include a team Iowa has played or that sits in the same neighborhood as the Hawkeyes in terms of seeding.