Inside the Iowa Basketball Numbers
The Iowa Hawkeyes have played 10 of their 31 game regular season slate. The statistics are beginning to take shape and produce more meaningful glimpses, but the meat of Iowa’s schedule is still three weeks away. So for now, these numbers are more about entertainment in many cases, except for where they aren’t. Make sense? No? Let’s look at the numbers and flesh it out.
We’ll use Iowa’s rankings/averages comparing them to other Big Ten teams from the Big Ten’s website. Statistics shown are updated through games as of December 8th.
SCHEDULE: Ken Pomeroy ranks Iowa’s schedule at 311 out of 347. It’s the 6th weakest schedule amongst teams from BCS conferences and the weakest schedule played by any Big Ten team. Pomeroy also ranks Iowa’s Big Ten schedule as the weakest of any Big Ten team at least at this point. Then again, there will be no weak schedules in the Big Ten this year but given that Iowa plays Illinois, Ohio State, Michigan and Michigan State (all ranked) just once, that’s a benefit. Keep this in mind when looking at the rest of the numbers.
Iowa ranks 6th in the Big Ten at 75.0 points per game. Indiana leads the way with 89.1 per game and Illinois is 2nd at 79.3 per game. While Iowa has placed an emphasis on defense this year and they do look better on the whole, they are allowing 62.6 points per game which is 10th in the Big Ten. Iowa’s defensive numbers look better when analyzing tempo-free statistics, however. Iowa is shooting .442 from the floor, good for 8th in the Big Ten. Iowa has attempted 579 field goals in 10 games, an average of 57.9. Indiana has averaged 59.1 attempts in nine games. Minnesota has played 11 games and has attempted 612. Illinois has attempted 604 in 10 games while Wisconsin has 600 attempts in ten games, so their attempts per games numbers are better than Iowa’s but the Hawkeyes are definitely in the upper half of the league.
Iowa is 2nd in the league shooting 73.8% from the free throw line; Indiana leads at 75.0 percent. Iowa has attempted 248 free throws, second most of any team in the Big Ten behind Minnesota’s 289 (in 11 games). Indiana is on pace for 271 attempts in 10 games (they have played nine) and Iowa would be 3rd in the league in free throws attempted per game. Michigan State has attempted just 195 free throws in ten games which is a startling low number for them. Iowa has made 183 in ten games.
Iowa is shooting just .304 from three-point range and surprisingly enough, that’s not the worst in the leauge. Penn State is making just 26.3% of their treys while Purdue is hitting just 26.2%. Michigan State is barely ahead of Iowa at 31.1%. Illinois has attempted 265 (more than any Big Ten team) in ten games and has made 40.8% of them. 40.9% of their points comes from beyond the arc, 10th best in all of college basketball. Iowa’s three-point percentage defense is 3rd best in the league.
Rebounding is beginning to look like a concern for Iowa. You don’t need the stats to tell you that if you watched the games against Wichita State and Virginia Tech, however Iowa won the battle of the boards against Iowa State on Friday night. Iowa is 11th in the Big Ten in rebounding defense, allowing 33.9 per game and is 8th in rebounding margin. Iowa is 28th in all of college basketball in offensive rebounding percentage.
Before the year I thought Iowa had a shot to be among the league’s leaders in blocked shots per game but I suspected Minnesota would lead in that category. So far, the Gophers are leading the Big Ten averaging 7.2 blocks per game. Iowa is second with a 5.1 blocks per game average. I don’t think anyone is going to catch the Gophers this year but Iowa was 6th in the league in blocks last year and averaged 3.4 per game on the year.
Iowa is 4th in the league in assists per game at 15.9. Penn State is last at 8.6, an atrocious figure. Then again, they lost Tim Frazier, one of the best scoring point guards in the league so you can’t dwell on their stats too long; they are just not going to be good this year without Frazier. Iowa is 5th in the league in turnover margin and 4th in the league in turnovers forced per game.
Aaron White is 11th in the league in points per game, 11th in rebounds per game, 12th in free throw percentage (his 70 attempts are 21 more than any of the other 14 players in the Top 15 in the league) and 5th in offensive rebounds. White is also 26th nationally in fouls drawn per 40 minutes and he’s 16h in the nation in free throw rate and leads Big Ten players in both of those categories.
Devyn Marble is 15th in the league in scoring, 13th in the assists and 12th in assist to turnover ratio.
Adam Woodbury is 2nd in the league in field goal percentage at 63.8%.
Anthony Clemmons is 3rd in the league in assist to turnover ratio and 11th in assists. He is 31st in the nation in assist rate and 3rd in the Big Ten.
Melsahn Basabe is 4th in blocks and Gabe Olaseni is 14th in blocked shots. Basabe is 3rd in the league in block percentage.
Mike Gesell is 8th in assist to turnover ratio.