Tyler Cook seems to be picking up where he left off before his finger injury.
Iowa men’s basketball coach Fran McCaffery said Cook is impressing him upon his return to the lineup.
“He has been terrific, and I think he still has unbelievable room for upside,” said McCaffery in a teleconference on Tuesday.
It really didn’t take long for the freshman forward to pick up where he left off. Cook emerged as Iowa’s second leading scoring option before missing seven games with a fractured right index finger. The injury required surgery.
Cook returned against Purdue on Dec. 28 and made his way back into the starting lineup in a win against Michigan on Sunday. He is averaging 11.5 points and 5.0 rebounds while shooting 50 percent in the last two games. Those figures are in line with his season averages of 13.1 points, 5.3 rebounds and 54.5 percent shooting.
“I don’t think he’s made a ton of mistakes,” McCaffery said. “He’s made a few, and little by little, I think those will go away.”
McCaffery wants Cook to focus on his rebounding. The 6-8, 253-pound forward did grab eight rebounds against the Wolverines.
“That is a big step for him,” McCaffery said.
Playing at Nebraska on Thursday (9:06 p.m. ET, BTN) may show just how much growth he’s made. Cook will matchup with Ed Morrow, who averages 8.4 rebounds per game. One of Cook’s top priorities will be limiting Morrow’s impact on the glass.
“He has his hands full with Ed Morrow,” McCaffery said. “That is a guy that seems to get every rebound whenever there is a missed shot on either end. So that will be a big challenge for him.”