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Iowa Rutgers Basketball

Rutgers' Corey Sanders throws down a dunk in the final two minutes to help the Scarlet Knights' finish off an 80-64 victory over Iowa.

After-thoughts from Iowa’s 80-64 loss to Rutgers:

--While Rutgers has looked like a capable team defensively this season, it’s horribly challenged from an offensive standpoint. It was 297th (out of 351 teams) in scoring, 326th in field goal percentage, 337th in 3-point percentage, 347th in free throw percentage and 320th in assists coming into this game. So, when a team like that shoots 53.7 percent from the field and makes 6 of 10 3-point attempts in the first half, the opposing defense is either very unlucky or totally uninspired. It was mostly the latter for the Hawkeyes on Wednesday. Rutgers’ shooting percentage was inflated by eight dunks and almost none of its 16 3-point attempts was contested.

--Rutgers’ 80 points is the most it ever has scored in a winning effort in the Big Ten. Most of its previous seven Big Ten wins were like its victory over Wisconsin earlier this season, which finished 64-60. Even when the Knights defeated a totally depleted Minnesota team for their only conference win of 2016, they only scored 75 points.

--The Rutgers offense reverted to form for awhile in the second half. The Scarlet Knights went 6 minutes, 44 seconds without a field goal, but the Hawkeyes did not capitalize, shaving only six points off what had been a 23-point deficit during that span.

--The Hawkeyes’ difficulty in containing quick guards continues. It wasn’t that surprising that Corey Sanders scored 18 points against them but his freshman running mate, Geo Baker, added 17. Those two also combined for 13 assists.

--Jordan Bohannon put on a shooting display with five more 3-pointers and 23 points, but he only had two assists to go with four turnovers. It’s the sixth time this season he has had more turnovers than assists. He did that only twice as a freshman. He still was far and away the Hawkeyes’ best offensive weapon and for most of the first half, he was their only offensive weapon.

--On paper, it looked like big men Tyler Cook and Luka Garza had decent games. They didn't, Cook had 10 points and 10 rebounds and Garza had 8 and 8, but between them, they made only 8 of 24 field goal attempts and turned the ball over seven times. Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said after the game that he didn’t like his team’s shot selection at times and although he didn’t say so, Cook and Garza were the biggest culprits.

--Iowa didn’t use much pressure defense until the final minutes of the game, which was curious. With senior Mike Williams sidelined by an ankle injury, Rutgers really was down to just two guards — Sanders and Baker played 74 of a possible 80 minutes — but McCaffery made no attempt to pressure them and try to wear them down. When he finally tried the press in the final minutes, it appeared to be effective.

--Rutgers was so desperate for backcourt help, it used a player who had not seen a minute of action all season and who played in just two games as a freshman last season. Actually, 6-foot-4, 260-pound Matt Bullock wasn’t a total disaster, contributing two points and one assist in eight minutes of action.

--Iowa guard Isaiah Moss did another disappearing act Wednesday. He played 22 minutes and matched Bullock with two points, one assist and no rebounds.

--Junior forward Ahmad Wagner clearly has fallen out of favor with McCaffery. He didn’t get into the lopsided game until three minutes remained, at the same time forgotten senior Dom Uhl got onto the court.

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