Nebraska Omaha (1-0) at Iowa (1-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, November 10, 4:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Carver-Hawkeye Arena (15,400) -- Iowa City, Iowa. Television: ESPN3.com. Home Record: Omaha 0-0, Iowa 1-0. Away Record: Omaha 1-0, Iowa 0-0. Neutral Record: Omaha 0-0, Iowa 0-0. Conference Record: Omaha 0-0, Iowa 0-0. Series Record: Iowa leads, 1-0.
GAME NOTES: The Nebraska Omaha Mavericks will try to hand the Iowa Hawkeyes an early season loss when the two teams meet at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday.
Nebraska Omaha survived its trip to DeKalb on Friday as C.J. Carter scored a traditional three-point play late in the game to lift it to a 68-66 win over Northern Illinois in its season opener. The Mavericks made the transition from Division II in 2012-13, and while the results weren't great, they certainly showed some promise by winning 11 games, six of which came in Summit League play. An improvement for the squad and ninth-year head coach Derrin Hansen is expected thanks to the return of four starters. Nebraska Omaha played at an extremely fast pace which gave it a nation-high average of 73 possessions per game. It managed to attempt 32 free-throws versus NIU to offset a poor 3-of-17 performance from beyond the arc.
Coach Fran McCaffery could not have asked for a better start to his fourth season at Iowa. His squad coasted to an 82-39 decision over UNC Wilmington on Friday without junior guard Josh Oglesby, who was injured on Wednesday and will be sidelined for six weeks due to a broken bone in his foot. The Hawkeyes return most of the firepower from the team that went 25-13 last season and reached the NIT Championship Game. Iowa improved to 381-119 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena with Friday's decision.
This will be the second meeting in history between Omaha and Iowa. The Hawkeyes own a 1-0 all-time series lead thanks to their 71-58 victory on Nov. 30, 1981 in the first encounter.
Carter finished with a game-high 18 points for the Mavericks on Friday as he sank 9-of-11 attempts at the charity stripe for half of his points. Omaha has a sensational leader in Preseason First Team All-Summit League selection Justin Simmons, who averaged 16.7 points, 4.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.2 steals per game as a junior. No other player returning to the Summit League had a higher scoring average. Simmons had an atrocious start to the season, tallying just six points after missing all nine of his shots from the floor. Marcus Tyus gave the team a lift with nine points off the bench in 19 minutes of action.
A handful of Iowa's newcomers played a big part in the thrashing of UNCW, including Jarrod Uthoff and Peter Jok. Uthoff finished with a team-best 14 points and also tallied seven rebounds and four blocks in 19 minutes. Jok added 11 points to go along with five boards. Some of the Hawkeyes that were expected to be the featured players, such as Aaron White, Roy Devyn Marble, Melsahn Basabe and Adam Woodbury had relatively quiet games due to the lopsided score. The Hawkeyes shot 46.3 percent from the field and 4-of-12 from behind the 3-point line. The team also had 19 assists on 31 field goals.
Omaha is heading in the right direction under Hansen, but it will take more time before it can take down a powerful opponent such as Iowa. The Hawkeyes have a great chance of making some noise in the Big Ten this season. They will most likely coast to another easy victory, although the leading scorers and rebounders could change due to the deep roster McCaffery has at his disposal.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Iowa 82, Nebraska Omaha 60
11/10 10:48:26 ET