Iowa fans have been waiting … and waiting … and waiting for the Hawkeye men’s basketball program to get back to where Dr. Tom Davis had left it some 15 years ago.
They wanted the best high school basketball players to stay in the state. They wanted top 100 players to pick the Hawkeyes over other major universities. And the hardcore fans recently wanted to have a point guard that actually made good decisions with the basketball.
Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery has done all of those things in just one full offseason of recruiting.
So far, McCaffery and the Iowa coaching staff has gotten five commitments for the 2012 class. The class includes one of the state’s best players in 7-foot-1 center Adam Woodbury, two point guards, another true center that is taller than 6-foot-10 and an underrated shooting guard who could turn out to be a diamond in the rough.
And don’t forget what McCaffery did last year in a short recruiting season. He brought in two players that ended up being two of the team’s best three or four players in point guard Bryce Cartwright and power forward Melsahn Basabe.
Is McCaffery’s job done at Iowa? Not even close. Is his office seat getting more and more comfortable by the day? You bet. And the passion of the Iowa fans certainly is not hurting his cause and his desire to want to turn things around.
Iowa’s latest commitment came earlier this week. HawkeyeReport.com’s Tom Kakert was first to report that two-star point guard Anthony Clemmons had given his verbal to the program. The Lansing, Michigan, native stands 6-foot-1 and weighs 185 pounds.
Iowa was Clemmons’ best offer as he picked the Hawkeyes over three instate schools — Detroit, Western Michigan and Eastern Michigan — as well as Northern Illinois.
When Cully Payne went down with a season-ending injury last year, McCaffery was left with little point guard depth behind Cartwright.
That shouldn’t be an issue in 2012 as McCaffery will welcome Clemmons and four-star point guard Mike Gesell to the roster. Gesell is a top 100 recruit from South Sioux City, Nebraska, who had scholarship offers from Nebraska, Stanford, Utah, Northern Iowa, Iowa State, Drake and Creighton.
Gesell was given a lot of credit for McCaffery and his staff being able to get Woodbury. Both Gesell and Woodbury play on the same AAU team in Martin Brothers and Woodbury admitted that Gesell talked to him everyday with the hopes of playing with the 7-footer in college.
Woodbury chose Iowa over North Carolina and also had offers from Wisconsin, Ohio State, Minnesota and Stanford. Woodbury also is a top 100 player who plays his high school ball for Sioux City East.
The other big man that McCaffery lured into the program for 2012 is 6-foot-11 center Kyle Meyer, who was the first to commit to the program in this class. Meyer is a three-star recruit from Duluth, Georgia. He also had scholarship offers from several mid-major programs.
The final player in the 2012 recruiting class is two star shooting guard Patrick Ingram, who hails from Indianapolis, Indiana. Ingram is 6-foot-3 and 175 pounds. Iowa was his best offer as he chose the Hawkeyes over Northern Iowa, St. Louis and Loyola-Chicago.
McCaffery and his coaching staff are not allowed to talk about committed players until they officially sign their Letters of Intent in December. But I think it is safe to say he is happy with what he has brought in for the 2012 class.
He has certainly done a great job in upgrading the talent on the recruiting trail. But how long will it take to come into fruition? Only time will tell.