Muscatine's Joe Wieskamp shoots over Bettendorf's Justin Hutter during a game earlier this season. Wieskamp was named Iowa's Gatorade Player of the Year on Monday. 

Since Mr. Basketball is an award for only seniors in Iowa, Joe Wieskamp was not eligible to win it this season.

Still, Wieskamp collected a major honor Monday for his stellar junior campaign.

The 6-foot-6 Muscatine product and Iowa recruit was named Iowa's Gatorade Player of the Year after averaging a state-best 30.4 points per game. 

Wieskamp, a four-star recruit and ranked among the nation's top 50 players in the 2018 class by multiple publications, is the first Mississippi Athletic Conference boys basketball player and just the second player from the Iowa Quad-Cities area to win the award since it began in 1986. 

Former Hawkeye Brig Tubbs, a Central DeWitt grad, captured it in 1987. 

Wieskamp, a three-time all-stater, had four games of 40 points or more this season including a career-high 50 against Burlington. The MAC player of the year also averaged 10.2 rebounds, 2.5 assists and ranked among the league's top 10 in steals and blocks while shooting 56.1 percent from the field.

"In my 15 years of coaching in the area, plus growing up and playing here, I have never seen a player as talented as Joe Wieskamp," North Scott coach Shamus Budde said. "He is an impossible matchup when you put his skills with his size. 

"The most impressive parts of his game are his pace, unselfishness and a killer instinct. Those are things you can't teach or coach."

Muscatine was 15-7 and lost in the substate final to eventual state champion Iowa City West. 

The award recognizes athletic excellence, academic achievement and exemplary character. In addition to his basketball exploits, Wieskamp has a 3.86 grade-point average and a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

He joins a list of past recipients from the state that includes Jess Settles, Dean Oliver, Matt Gatens, Harrison Barnes, Jarrod Uthoff, Marcus Paige and Jordan Bohannon.

Rock Island sophomore Brea Beal was named Illinois' Gatorade Player of the Year last week for girls basketball. 


Sports Editor

Prep sports editor, with emphasis on covering the Mississippi Athletic Conference and Iowa area high schools. I've been in sports journalism for 17 years, the last five at the Quad-City Times.