Iowa can claim NFL developmental title, Peter Jok’s latest honor, why Iowa needs a Big Ten women’s basketball tourney win and more
The best way to start your day is right here at Landof10.com as we prepare you for everything you need to know about Iowa sports. We’ll share our Iowa Breakfast Club here with you at 8:30 a.m. (ET) Monday through Friday.
So let’s get to it. Here is the Iowa Breakfast Club for Tuesday, Feb. 28.
Building an NFL draft prospect
Iowa likes to refer to itself as a developmental program. The coaching staff prides itself on turning 2-star prospects into college football standouts and, as Land of 10’s Scott Dochterman recently pointed out, NFL players.
It turns out the Hawkeyes are as good as anyone in the country at it. SportSource Analytics reported on social media that Iowa has sent more 3-star (or lower-ranked) prospects into the NFL than any other Power 5 program in the last decade.
— SportSourceAnalytics (@SportSourceA) February 26, 2017
The list includes current NFL players like DL Mike Daniels, S Micah Hyde and LBs Anthony Hitchens and Christian Kirksey.
Don’t be surprised if Iowa starts using that tweet, along with pictures of players such as Daniels, as promotional recruiting material. Everything is potential recruiting fodder and something that intertwines a program with pro football is exactly what every team is looking to use.
Does it come with an award?
Hawkeyes guard Peter Jok took home the Stat Line of the Week honor from Big Ten Network senior writer Tom Dienhart.
Jok received the recognition after setting the Iowa single-game record for made free throws in an overtime win against Indiana on Feb. 21 — he hit 22 of 23 free throws en route to 35 points. In a season that will likely result in first-team all-conference honors (and possibly a Big Ten Player of the Year award), this was an all-time performance from Jok. He has topped 30 points four other times this season, including a 40-point game against Memphis, but the Hawkeyes lost each one of those.
When you combine the record-setting day, the importance of every single Jok point in the overtime win and the way he took over the game late, the Breakfast Club would select the Indiana contest as his best game of the season.
On to the next honor
Jok and Iowa head to No. 22 Wisconsin on Thursday (9:05 p.m. ET, ESPN). And Jok isn’t just looking to keep the team’s NCAA Tournament hopes alive — he’s out to knock off the one holdout on his list of Big Ten venues in which he’s won.
Peter Jok (Iowa's lone four-year senior) has won at every Big Ten arena during his collegiate career except one — Wisconsin. #Hawkeyes
— Iowa Basketball (@IowaHoops) February 27, 2017
Picking up a win in the every arena in the league is an impressive, albeit quirky, feat. It’s harder to do today than it was 15 years ago thanks to expansion and players only getting potentially one shot at winning at some venues.
The Big Ten should honor any basketball player — men’s or women’s — who accomplishes the feat with a small plaque or something. Lord knows there is enough TV money to afford it.
The latest change is no change
ESPN’s Charlie Creme revealed his latest women’s NCAA Tournament bracketology on Monday. There was no significant change for the Hawkeyes, as they are still in the First Four out. But now, Iowa is the first team left out of the bracket.
What does it mean? A win against Northwestern to open the Big Ten Tournament is a necessity to make the big dance. Two wins, including a quarterfinals victory against No. 9 Ohio State, would likely lock up a berth.
The Hawkeyes face the Wildcats on Thursday (noon ET, BTN).
McCoy’s big weekend
Iowa shortstop Mason McCoy took home the Big Ten Player of the Week honors Monday following a week in which he hit .438 with 7 hits, 6 runs and 6 RBI to lead the Hawkeyes to a 3-1 record. He hit safely in all four games last week.
This is the second player of the week honor for McCoy.
Lots of links
- How a phone call and transfer led to Kelton Copeland becoming the Iowa wide receivers coach.
- Blair Sanderson of Rivals wrote a feature John Schmidt, West Des Moines Dowling Catholic’s new running back who could end up on Iowa’s recruiting radar.
- Mike Hlas, of the Cedar Rapids Gazette, on why forward Tyler Cook has been playing so well recently.
- The seeds for the Big Ten wrestling championship were revealed on Monday and it’s no surprise to find Iowa’s Thomas Gilman No. 1 at 125 pounds.