Men's Basketball Breakdown: Iowa At The Las Vegas Invitational

Iowa coach Fran McCaffery will have to work with a shortened rotation in this week's Las Vegas Invitational. (Jeffrey Becker/USA Today Sports)
John Bohnenkamp

Breaking down the Las Vegas Invitational with Iowa, Texas Tech, Creighton and San Diego State.

Tournament facts

What — Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational

Where — Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, Nev.

Thursday's games — Iowa vs. Texas Tech, 7 p.m. CST; Creighton vs. San Diego State, 9:30 p.m. CST

Friday's games — Championship, 7 p.m. Third-place game, 9:30 p.m.

TV — FS1

Radio — Hawkeye Radio Network

Records — Iowa 4-1, Texas Tech 5-0, Creighton 4-0, San Diego State 6-0

Rankings — Texas Tech is No. 12 in the Associated Press and coaches polls.

Iowa lineup — Luka Garza (C, 6-11, Jr., 22.2 ppg.), Connor McCaffery (G, 6-5, Soph., 6.4 ppg.), CJ Fredrick (G, 6-3, Fr., 10.4 ppg.), Joe Wieskamp (G, 6-6, Soph., 11 ppg.), fifth starter TBA

Texas Tech lineup — TJ Holyfield (F, 6-8, Sr., 13.8 ppg.), Kyler Edwards (G, 6-4, Soph., 10 ppg.), Jahmi'us Ramsey (G, 6-3, Fr., 19.4 ppg.), Terrence Shannon Jr. (G, 6-6, Fr., 10 ppg.), Davide Moretti (G, 6-3, Jr., 13.8 ppg.

The analytics

KenPom ratings — Texas Tech 17, Creighton 51, Iowa 57, San Diego State 66

Sagarin ratings — Texas Tech 13, San Diego State 28, Iowa 61, Creighton 69.

Fast facts

• Eight of Iowa's next 11 games will be played on the road or on neutral courts.

• The Hawkeyes will play in three different time zones, seven different states and travel 8,632 miles in that stretch.

• Iowa played in the Las Vegas Invitational in 2008, losing to West Virginia and beating Kansas State.

What to watch

Iowa's rotation is thin. Forward Jack Nunge, who started the first five games, is out for the rest of the season after tearing his ACL. Forward Patrick McCaffery is questionable as he deals with health issues related to his treatment for thyroid cancer in 2014. Guard Jordan Bohannon missed Sunday's game against Cal Poly with hip soreness.

The Hawkeyes head into this tournament on a three-game winning streak, but the competition level will rise considerably in the next week. After these two games, they play at Syracuse in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, on the road at Michigan and at home against Minnesota to open the Big Ten schedule, then at Iowa State.

Comments