The scores seem to say it all about a lost Saturday for Iowa Hawkeye sports:
Men's basketball: Nebraska 64, Iowa 60
Wrestling: Minnesota 22, Iowa 15
Wrestling: Missouri 18, Iowa 16
All of the results were bitter to the Hawkeyes, but the basketball loss to the Cornhuskers and the wrestling defeat to Missouri were especially hard for them to take. Iowa squirted away a 19-point lead in the basketball game. In the Missouri dual, top-ranked Hawkeyes Matt McDonough and Derek St. John lost. Alan Waters beat two-time NCAA champion McDonough, 4-0.
(NOTE: This post originally contained a Twitter post I believed was from McDonough. I have since learned it was not. I apologize to McDonough and all who saw it. Wrestlers are interesting enough without having someone else speak for them or portray them.)
Hawkeyes wrestling coach Tom Brands said this Saturday night:
"We have work to do, and I'd say the same thing whether we win or lose. We have to move forward. Things are maybe a little bit bizarre right now, and we have to stop going down that path."
The last time Iowa went to the NCAA men's basketball tournament was 2006. A mainstay on that team was forward Greg Brunner. He has carved out a very nice professional career for himself in Italy, where he plays for a team called Trenkwalder RE. He had a 26-point game last Sunday, and swished three 3-pointers after only sinking a pair of threes in his first 17 games. He scored 14 points today (Feb. 24) in Trenkwalder's 79-61 win over EA7 Milano.
Brunner is seven years removed from being a Hawkeye, and that was two Iowa coaches ago. But he is a fan. And, he is one of the relatively few people who really understand what the current team is experiencing in light of its NCAA hopes taking a big hit with the loss at Nebraska.
Brunner is one of my all-time favorite Iowa players to cover, not only because he was a full-effort player who was fun to watch, but because he spoke honestly, had a good sense of humor, and didn't seem to have a big ego. Here's what he said on Facebook Saturday about the current Hawkeyes: