This Friday, there is an NCAAB matchup between the SIU-Edwardsville Cougars and the Iowa Hawkeyes. This will be the first meeting between these teams this season and it will take place at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Cougars Look To Remain UndefeatedThe SIU-Edwardsville Cougars entered the 2019-2020 NCAAB season with the expectations of finishing in the bottom half of the Ohio Valley Conference once again. Last season, SIU-Edwardsville finished in seventh place in the regular-season conference standings as it finished the season with a 6-12 record in conference play. However, SIU-Edwardsville did manage to win its season opener against a Division-II team. Now, the Cougars have to travel to a very hostile environment to take on an underrated Big Ten team as they will look to pull off the shocking upset which will keep their undefeated season intact.
Leading the Cougars offensively is sophomore guard Cameron Williams who look amazing in the season opener. In 29 minutes of action, he had a team-high 17 points while shooting 40% from the three-point line. Last season, Williams averaged 10.1 points per game along with 3.4 rebounds so he looks poised to have an even better season.
🚨🚨🚨🚨Day 1 Dunk!🚨🚨🚨🚨 pic.twitter.com/Sz1y7NeYUy— SIUE Mens Basketball (@SIUEMBB) September 25, 2019
SIU-Edwardsville's most underrated player is junior guard Mike Adewunmiwho was good in the season opener. Specifically, he is averaging 11.0 points per game along with 7.0 rebounds on an efficient 62.5% shooting from the floor. Adewunmi did not play last season so the program was hopeful that he could provide a much-needed spark for it offensively which looks to be the case.
Iowa Looks For Win In Season OpenerThe Iowa Hawkeyes enter the 2019-2020 NCAAB season with hopes of competing for a conference championship in the Big Ten. Last season, Iowa finished in sixth place in the regular-season conference standings. However, Iowa almost made a deep run in the NCAA Tournament but lost to Tennessee in overtime in the Round of 32. Now, Iowa brings back the majority of its roster from last season as it will look to make an even deeper run this March. However, that is a long way away and Iowa will simply be focused on starting the season off with a home victory on Friday.
Leading the Hawkeyes offensively is senior guard Jordan Bohannon who looked great last season. Specifically, he averaged 11.6 points per game along with 3.4 assists. He was also extremely efficient as he shot 38.5% from the three-point line. Plus, Bohannon was the finisher on this team last season as he took almost all of the big shots down the stretch of ballgames. Now, he will look to embrace an even bigger role in his final year with the program.
Hawks Cruise in Exhibition Game Victory pic.twitter.com/YKipSIp0XK— Iowa Basketball (@IowaHoops) November 5, 2019
Iowa's most underrated player is junior center Luka Garza who was very solid last season. Specifically, he averaged 13.1 points per game along with 4.5 rebounds on an efficient 53.1% shooting from the floor. Standing roughly seven feet tall, Garza only averaged 0.5 blocks which is a bit concerning as he has been quite an underwhelming rim protector in his college career. If Iowa plans on making the next step forward, Garza's defense will need to improve.
Trends found on Covers.com, are:
- Cougars are 7-20 ATS in their last 27 non-conference games.
- Hawkeyes are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 non-conference games.