Hawkeyes Ranked In SI's Way-Too-Early Top 25

John Bohnenkamp

College basketball rosters are full of moving parts these days and yes, Tuesday would have been the day after the NCAA tournament national championship game, so it's still early.

But Iowa is getting a lot of attention in those way-too-early rankings for the 2020-21 season.

The Hawkeyes came in at No. 8 in Sports Illustrated's rankings for next season.

Iowa was ranked the highest of any Big Ten team.

SI's assessment of the Hawkeyes:

"This ranking obviously hinges on Luka Garza’s return. If he’s back, there’s no reason to think his low-post domination won’t continue, and Iowa should bring back Joe Wieskamp, most of its supporting cast and a healthy Jordan Bohannon, making it the Big Ten’s most dangerous team on paper. The big question will be whether the Hawkeyes can make incremental improvements defensively, with Garza warranting heavy usage but creating some limitations on the other end in certain matchups."

The Hawkeyes return every starter from this season's 20-11 team. Guard Bakari Evelyn and forward Ryan Kriener were seniors. Forward Cordell Pemsl and forward Riley Till are leaving as graduate transfers.

Iowa brings in a five-player recruiting class as well.

Villanova was ranked No. 1 by SI, followed by Gonzaga, Baylor, Virginia and Creighton.

The next five were Kentucky, Duke, Iowa, Kansas and Texas Tech.

Among other Big Ten teams, Michigan State was 11th, Wisconsin was 14th, Ohio State was 16th, Michigan was 20th and Rutgers was 24th.

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