Iowa Women’s & Men’s Basketball Teams Score Commitments [PHOTOS/VIDEOS]
The Iowa women's and men's basketball teams are in very different positions heading into this fall.
The Iowa women are losing only three players from a team that finished the season by playing in the national title game. Granted, two of them were vital to the team's success. Longtime starters McKenna Warnock and Monika Czinano are now gone. Last night, Czinano was drafted by the LA Sparks of the WNBA. More on the third, newly-announced departure from the team later in this story.
Coming into Iowa City this fall are a point guard and an interior player who's not likely to see action during the upcoming season.
Kennise Johnson-Etienne is a 5'8" point guard who was one of the top prospects from the state of Illinois. Johnson-Etienne signed her national letter of intent last summer. You can see a highlight video here.
The Iowa women's program will also be joined this fall by Ava Jones. She was seriously injured in a vehicle-pedestrian accident in Louisville, Kentucky last July. Jones, her mom, and her brother were all injured when they were struck while walking. Ava's father died from his injuries.
This winter, Jones returned to the court for the first time as she continues to recover from her injuries.
Over the weekend, the Iowa women got a verbal commitment for the 2024-25 season from 6'1" forward Teagan Mallegni from Wisconsin. According to Hawkeye Report, she's the 59th-ranked player in the class by ESPN HoopGurlz and has received more than 50 scholarship offers.
You can see highlights from one of Mallegni's games below.
This afternoon, a scholarship opened on the 2023-24 Iowa women's basketball team. Hawk Fanatic reports sophomore forward Shateah Wetering has entered the transfer portal.
There has been much speculation that Iowa could be the landing spot for 6'7" center Lauren Betts. The top-rated national recruit in the 2022-23 class, Betts entered the transfer portal last week after her first season at Stanford. When the news broke last week, Iowa didn't have a scholarship available. They do now. Stay tuned.
On to the Iowa men. The 2022-23 season came to a disappointing end in the opening round of the NCAA basketball tournament.
In addition to losing Connor McCaffery and Filip Rebraca, who've both used all their eligibility, starting guard Ahron Ulis and center Josh Ogundele have entered the transfer portal. Last week, Kris Murray announced he would be part of this year's NBA draft. Iowa has plenty of holes to fill, despite four incoming recruits for next season. The Hawkeyes have been looking to make more additions for next season, and they've scored their first player.
Iowa's first "get" is a big one in more ways than one. Ben Krikke is a 6'9" 235-pound forward who will give Iowa some much-needed help under the basket.
Krikke played for Valparaiso for the last four years, and this season led the Missouri Valley Conference in scoring at 19.4 points per game to go along with nearly 6 rebounds per contest. As you can see from his transfer portal highlight video, Krikke has a shooter's touch both under, and away from the basket. He has one year of eligibility remaining.
Iowa still has two scholarships open for next season, so you can bet McCaffery isn't done adding to his 2023-24 roster.