What we learned from Iowa’s 71-69 loss to Michigan State on Tuesday:

-- The Hawkeyes are not going to win the Big Ten title. Hopefully, most people weren’t banking on that anyhow but it really isn’t going to happen now. They are a full three games behind Michigan and two games behind Michigan State in the standings and have lost to both teams. And they still have to go to East Lansing later in the season.

-- Iowa just wasn’t tough enough to beat Michigan State on Tuesday. Fran McCaffery said it. Aaron White said it. They’ll get no argument here. The Hawkeyes had plenty of chances to put the shorthanded Spartans away and never came close to doing it.

-- Michigan State is tough enough to beat anybody. The determination shown by part-time guys like Matt Costello, Travis Trice and Russell Byrd was impressive, and Keith Appling and Denzel Valentine are flat-out gamers. There might be a few more physically gifted teams out there but very few with that sort of grit. When they get Adreian Payne and Branden Dawson back, it’s hard to imagine too many teams hanging with them.

-- It is possible for players to be too hyped up. Although Fran McCaffery denied that was the case Tuesday, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo hinted that he thought the Hawkeyes might have been more adversely impacted by a wild-eyed home crowd than the visiting Spartans. It may not have been a huge factor, but it probably contributed to a very close loss.

-- The Iowa home crowd is back. As Izzo noted, it reminded him of what Carver-Hawkeye Arena was like during the Tom Davis era. The Hawkeyes have had other sellouts this season but nothing like the deafening environment of Tuesday night. If it’s like this for every game the rest of the way, the Hawkeyes shouldn’t lose many at home. Very few teams are going to stand up to it the way Michigan State did.

(9) comments

Constitutionalist

I think the hawks lost for many reasons: poor officiating, poor free throw shooting, and Fran losing his cool. The only thing Iowa did well was play defense, and they only lost by 2 in overtime to a great team like MSU. That said if Iowa gets it together they will be tough to beat and will be in every game due to how well they play D.

jbeds

We as Hawk fans can't blame the officials for this loss. We shot 43 free throws to the Spartans 20 and we didnt make a FG in the last 13 minutes of the game. We can't beat the top tier teams in the big ten with performances like we had last night. Although there were some calls that weren't made the refs basically handed us the game on a silver platter and we didnt want it. Hats off to the Spartans for having 2 starters out and still coming in to our place and collecting rent.

onklebd

It is hard to shoot when contact is made on every shot. There is a difference between missing a call and standing there watching a player take four steps to make a basket and looking the other way. These officials are cheaters and should not be allowed to do this. You won't see them in the tournament. I have also officiated games and have never purposely called against one team, but others I have worked with have. It sickens me to see it. Everyone always says they miss calls, these were done to keep Mi St in the game. When is the last time Izzo had a t called on him? He doesn't have calls go against him so he doesn't need to scream. It amazes me to watch a game in Ames and the visiting team get railroaded and watch Iowa at home and see them get it .

Florida1234
Florida1234

I watched the game, and I couldn't disagree with you any more. Iowa shot 43 free throws and was in the Bonus + for over 15 minutes of the game! There is difference between losing and being a sore loser. Don't be a sore loser. We had MANY chances to convert and win the game, we failed time an time again. It had nothing to do with the officiating. They were bad, but equally as bad on both sides.

Czechmate

Good teams overcome inconsistant officiating. As a former high school and small college bb official the game can be difficult to officiate when it is not played well. Both teams played poorly last night! It was a roller derby game with plenty of contact under both baskets.

Iowa will finish the BIG at 12-6 or 11-7 before the BIG Tournament. I think that they could go into the Sweet 16 in the NCAA because they will line-up against teams that have no knowledge of their system. Wisconsin and MSU know how they play and will always try to out muscle them in the paint. MSU beat the Hawks up under the basket last night!

happy2bhere

onkled - you miss the point. Officials make errors every game. You have to expect it. Iowa lost this game, and Hawks other four losses, due to poor free throw shooting and no outside shooting threat. These kids are great, play hard, exciting basketball. To reach next level, they must improve shooting skills.

onklebd

Worst officiating game I have ever been at in my life. Iowa was fouled on every single shot that was not a three pointer, Michigan State was never called for a travel, three seconds, offensive foul, illegal screen, Izzo was out of the coaches box all night, Fran got a t for getting out of the box once, they bailed out Mi St at least 8 times with bs calls. With good officials Iowa wins this game by 20. Of coarse since Doxie is not an Iowa fan you will not ever see anything written about that stuff.

Florida1234
Florida1234

onlebd, you are a flat out sore loser...How do we win by 20? We had a chance to pull away several times..And the T wasn't the box, unfortunately the refs didn't have the stones to say that they T'ed him up for being out of line. Fran needs to learn how to control himself.

DavenportResedent

I don't believe Michigan State stood up to anything. Iowa didn't score a bucket in the last ten of regulation, or at all in overtime. Hawks gave this one to them.

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