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College Basketball: Iowa Hawkeyes earn NCAA Tournament bid as #2 seed

This news story was published on March 15, 2021.
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IOWA CITY – The University of Iowa men’s basketball team received an at-large berth to the 2021 Men’s Basketball Tournament, its 27th appearance in the tournament, including its fifth under head coach Fran McCaffery.

Iowa (21-8) received a No. 2 seed in the West Region and will play 15th-seeded Grand Canyon (17-6) on Saturday in Indianapolis. Saturday will be the first ever meeting between the two teams. The other two teams in Iowa’s first-weekend bracket include No. 7 Oregon and 10th-seeded VCU.

The No. 2 seed matches Iowa’s highest seed ever in NCAA Tournament history (No. 2 seed in the 1987 Tournament).

Information on pre-tournament news conferences and open practice times will be released in the coming days.

The NCAA will allow a limited number of fans at the 2021 Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, including all rounds and the Final Four. Hawkeye fans interested in tickets should visit

Iowa qualified for five NCAA tournaments over the last seven years (2014, 2015, 2016, 2019, 2021) and eight postseason tournaments over the last 10 seasons (4 NCAA; 3 NIT). The Hawkeyes likely would have qualified for the 2020 NCAA Tournament if not canceled due to the pandemic.
Iowa was ranked in the top 15 of the Associated Press Poll every week during the 2020-21 season. The Hawkeyes were ranked fifth in the preseason poll and No. 5 in the final regular season poll.
The Hawkeyes recorded 13 Quad 1 (8) and Quad 2 (5) victories.
Iowa won eight games over AP Top 25 teams in 2020-21, tying Kansas and Illinois for second most in the country (Oklahoma State, 9).
Senior Luka Garza was named Big Ten Player of the Year, junior Joe Wieskamp was a second team all-conference honoree, while Keegan Murray was named to the five-player All-Big Ten Freshman Team.
Five of Iowa’s eight losses in 2020-21 came to teams ranked in the top 10 of the NCAA NET Rankings.
Fran McCaffery has guided Iowa to 20 wins or more in seven of the last nine seasons and finished in the top half of the Big Ten eight of the last nine years. Iowa is tied with Michigan State and Wisconsin for the most upper division finishes in the Big Ten since 2013.

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