The Box Score: Inside Iowa Men's Basketball statistics

BY TOM CLOS | FEBRUARY 12, 2013 5:00 AM

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With about a month remaining in the Black and Gold’s regular season, Iowa sits at 15-9 overall, 4-7 in the Big Ten — good for eighth place in the league. With seven games remaining and an RPI of 92, the Hawkeyes are desperate for any sort of victories they could boast on their tournament résumé come Selection Sunday.

But as the numbers show, this has been easier said than done for the Black and Gold this season.

Wins against top-25 RPI Teams — 0

The Hawkeyes have the misfortune and luxury of playing in the top conference in America. The downside is the top-level competition Iowa sees night in and night out, making victories a premium. The advantages though, are the numerous opportunities to score season-defining victories thanks to the elite teams they see, some twice a season. The problem the Hawkeyes have run into is that through five games against top-25 RPI competition, they are winless. The Black and Gold have blown late leads at home against Indiana and Michigan State as well as last week at Minnesota.  Only two contests versus top-25 RPI teams remain in the Hoosiers and Gophers, and when this season is all said and done, look at the Hawkeyes’ record against top-25 RPI teams as a key reason they are NIT-bound.

Road Victories — 1

Iowa has played 24 games and has won 15 times. Amazingly, only one of those victories has come in a true road game. The Hawkeyes lost their lone nonconference road test at Virginia Tech Nov. 27, and they have dropped six of their seven treks into Big Ten country, the exception being their 70-50 win at Northwestern Jan. 13. There’s no single magic formula for making the NCAA Tournament, but it’s safe to say a team probably needs to win more than one road game. Iowa beat Northern Iowa in Des Moines, and its win over Western Kentucky as well as its loss to Wichita State were in Mexico, all considered neutral-site games.

Field-Goal Percentage — 42.4 (8th in Big Ten, 216th in NCAA)

The Hawkeyes have consistently been one of the poorest shooting teams in the nation, thanks to a backcourt that hasn’t been efficient from the field, to say the least. Junior guard Devyn Marble, sophomore Josh Oglesby, and freshmen Anthony Clemmons and Mike Gesell have each posted a sub-40 percent field-goal percentages. Oglesby is the biggest offender; through 23 appearances the underclassman has shot just 28.9 percent from the field. Iowa is almost 8 percentage points off the league lead in field-goal percentage, led by Indiana at 50.1 percent.

Points Per Game — 72.2 (5th in Big Ten, 71st in NCAA)

Even though the Hawkeyes are such a poor shooting squad, they rank near the top of the Big Ten in points scored per game. This has been helped thanks mostly to a soft nonconference schedule in which the Black and Gold scored 70 or more points on nine occasions. Iowa’s highest point total of the season was a 90-46 win over South Carolina State on Dec. 19. Conference play, on the other hand, has been a different story. The Hawkeyes have posted 70 or more points in just five of 11 league contests and are averaging 66.5 points per game in conference play. Iowa also posted season-low point totals (59) in losses to Michigan State and Minnesota. Still, through all of the losing conference play has handed the Black and Gold, it’s an amazing fact the Hawkeyes remain one of the Big Ten’s top offensive teams.

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