Hey, we're getting votes! The preseason USA Today Coaches Poll is out and, well, take a look:
USA Today Coaches Poll
|1||North Carolina Tar Heels||26-12||749||12||NR||0||-|
|4||Duke Blue Devils||35-4||686||3||NR||0||-|
|7||Iowa State Cyclones||25-9||541||0||NR||0||-|
|12||Wichita State Shockers||30-5||461||0||NR||0||-|
|13||Michigan State Spartans||27-12||386||0||NR||0||-|
|14||California Golden Bears||18-15||350||0||NR||0||-|
|18||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||32-6||172||0||NR||0||-|
|23||West Virginia Mountaineers||25-10||125||0||NR||0||-|
Iowa didn't crack the Top 25 (duh), but they are receiving a few votes in Ye Olde Coaches Poll -- 8 to be precise. Five Big Ten teams (Maryland at #3, Michigan State at #13, Indiana at #15, Wisconsin at #17, and Purdue at #24) did crack the Top 25 and two others (Michigan, Ohio State) joined Iowa in Others Receiving Votes land. A handful of Iowa's potential non-conference opponents (Iowa State at #7, Wichita State at #12, Notre Dame at #18) are also among the Top 25. Remember how Iowa's football schedule includes hardly any games against Top 25 opponents? That isn't going to be a problem for the hoopyballers.
Preseason projectin'. The Big Ten also announced the hoops preseason All-Big Ten team yesterday and, yes, Iowa was represented:
If you want to see the list in non-GIF form:
2015-16 PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN TEAM
James Blackmon Jr., Indiana
Yogi Ferrell, Indiana
Jarrod Uthoff, Iowa (hey that's us!)
Jake Layman, Maryland
MELO TRIMBLE, MARYLAND
Caris LeVert, Michigan
DENZEL VALENTINE, MICHIGAN STATE
A.J. HAMMONS, PURDUE
NIGEL HAYES, WISCONSIN
Bronson Koenig, Wisconsin
(Unanimous selections in ALL CAPS)
Neither the media nor the coaches released preseason predictions for the conference, but BTN.com did:
2015-16 BIG TEN STANDINGS
1. Maryland - 9
2. Indiana - 26
3. Purdue - 28
4. Michigan State - 30
5. Wisconsin - 32
6. Michigan - 44
7. Ohio State - 64
8. Illinois - 66
9. Iowa - 69
10. Northwestern - 73
11. Nebraska - 94
12. Minnesota - 96
13. Penn State - 97
14. Rutgers - 112
"Middle of the pack" has been a pretty common preseason projection for Iowa hoops in 2015 -- despite returning four seniors, this team has a lot to prove. Let's hope the players use these projections as fuel for their season.
Talking Fran-kly. Fran talked about the newbies, although we're not really any closer to figuring out which ones will actually play much this year.
As for which newcomers will contribute immediately, McCaffery said Thursday, "It probably changes day to day."
"A couple of days ago I probably would have said Andrew Fleming and Ahmad Wagner," McCaffery said. "The next day I would have said Dale Jones and Isaiah Moss. The two guys that everybody forgets are (red-shirt freshmen) Nicholas Baer and Brady Ellingson. Brady was injured last year, and Nicholas is a walk-on. There's been days when (Baer) was a dominant player, and there's days when he's not. I think that's the issue that we're going through right now. There's not been a consistency from those guys.
But apparently one of them is getting a redshirt. Start your guessing now!
A couple of interesting notes today. One, Iowa will red-shirt an undetermined player. Two, TV Teddy will officiate an Iowa Big Ten game.— Scott Dochterman (@ScottDochterman) October 15, 2015
(As for the second part of that tweet... Ugh. Ugh ugh ugh ugh ugh. And ugh, for good measure.)
And Fran is still on that "Woodbury playing big minutes" kick. I'm still going to believe 30+ minutes a game there when I see it.
McCaffery on Woodbury "His role will change. ... I think Adam is in the best shape of his life." ... His minutes will go up to "34 maybe."— Scott Dochterman (@ScottDochterman) October 15, 2015
You can watch all of McCaffery's comments right here:
Also, the ladies got in on the Media Day action today, too. Ally Disterhoft (who remains a fearsome doppelganger for Arya Stark) joined Jarrod Uthoff in earning preseason All-Big Ten honors from the coaches:
The non-GIF list is available here. The media left Disterhoft off their preseason All-Big Ten team. Because they're haters, probably. Hoperfully Ary-er, Ally teaches them the error of their ways by
stabbing them in the eyes with knives draining lots of buckets on Iowa's hapless opponents. BTN also got a few words from Disterhoft:
Bluder talked about Iowa embracing "a different look" after losing so much production from now-departed seniors Sam Logic, Melissa Dixon, and Bethany Doolittle.
"The competition is just at a different level because of the opportunity for minutes, and they know that," Bluder said. "They are smart. They know what we've lost and what is open and what is available."
Iowa must replace three starters in departed seniors Bethany Doolittle, Samantha Logic and Melissa Dixon. That trio combined to account for more than 53 percent of the Hawkeyes' scoring a year ago.
Bluder has liked what she has seen from sophomore forward Carly Mohns and said freshmen Megan Gustafson and Tania Davis would "definitely be in the mix of things."
A 6-foot-3 post, Gustafson is a candidate to help replace Doolittle's production in the paint. The 5-foot-4 Davis is a likely replacement for Logic at point guard.
You can watch her full comments below: