I’ll keep this quick with takeaways.
Iowa wasn’t ready for bullyball. TCU has an identity and they played to it. They raced to a 9-0 run in the first half and extended a two-point halftime lead to 11 in the first five minutes of the second half. The Hawks weren’t ready for the physicality, as the Horned Frogs forced nine first half turnovers and 15 overall. They hammered the boards as expected, outrebounding the Hawkeyes 41-28. The corralled 42% of their missed shots.
TCU did an especially good job of just ... stopping the ball. Iowa’s off-ball movement was fine enough but they turned Iowa into an isolation team and that’s not their game. I thought Iowa tried playing through the post way too much. While that works, especially when you’re using post ups to counter double teams, Iowa doesn’t have the personnel for that to be a foundational component of their offense.
Patrick McCaffery was particularly miffed, as his 21-point game last night was followed with a goose egg today.
The Hawkeyes couldn’t find a counter on defense. As the Horned Frogs extended their second half lead, Iowa went to a press and they broke it so easily. It helps to have a guy like Eddie Lampkin at center as a very willing and able passer so the ball doesn’t stop, really ever. Cut that guy’s game up for Josh Ogundele to mirror. TCU rode the hot hand all game, which made it tough for Iowa since there were many of them.
Iowa needs their stars to play like it. One game is a nice story when Iowa can work through poor shooting games from Kris Murray & Tony Perkins to come away with the win but two straight nights make it tough to string wins against good teams together. The two finished with 26 points on 11/29 shooting with much of Perkins’ 15 points coming in garbage time. Starting in a 9-0 hole is especially tough and something we’ve seen from bad Iowa basketball teams in the past.
Fran McCaffery pulled three starters after that and found some gold with Ahron Ulis & Dasonte Bowen. The two kept Iowa afloat with 15 first-half points. Ulis finished with 15 on 7/8 shooting. He’s played well this season.
Nobody could buy a basket. Not gonna win many games shooting 3/17 from deep.
Next up: vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets; Tuesday, November 29th at Carver-Hawkeye Arena