By Pat Harty
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Matt Mooney has a long and growing list of schools to choose from as a graduate transfer, but Iowa apparently isn’t interested in the star guard from the University of South Dakota.
The 6-foot-3 Mooney said in a message through Facebook that he hadn’t heard from Iowa since announcing his decision to explore other options as a graduate transfer.
The Wauconda, Ill., native has heard from numerous schools and already has reportedly met with coaches from some schools, including Iowa State.
Mooney transferred to USD from Air Force after his freshman season and sat out a season before becoming the leading scorer for the Yotes during his sophomore and junior campaigns, averaging almost 19 points a game both seasons.
Mooney hasn't closed the door on returning to South Dakota, but he would have to turn down several high-profile programs, including Arizona, to do so.
Iowa’s current roster is in flux with guard Brady Ellingson and forward Ahmad Wagner having recently left the program, and with forward Tyler Cook and shooting guard Isaiah Moss testing the NBA Draft process as sophomores.
Iowa coach Fran McCaffery will have three scholarships available after Ellingson and Wagner leave the team, leading to speculation that McCaffery might reach out to Mooney, a two-time All-Summit League first-team guard.
Ellingson, who will be a fifth-year senior, wants to play for another school as a graduate transfer, while Wagner is switching to football after playing basketball for three seasons at Iowa.
Wagner was an all-state receiver as a high school senior in Ohio. It was the only season he played football in high school.
Iowa is coming off a 14-19 season in McCaffery's eighth season as head coach.
Assuming Moss returns next season, he would be expected to start alongside junior point guard Jordan Bohannon. They both have started for most of the past two seasons.
They would be joined by 6-7 junior-to-be Maishe Dailey, 6-5 redshirt freshman Connor McCaffery, who is Fran McCaffery's son, and 6-4 incoming freshman C.J. Fredrick.
Muscatine native Joe Wieskamp, a highly decorated 6-6 incoming freshman from Muscatine, also could help at shooting guard.