Center Luka Garza may have left Iowa for the NBA, but his impact remains with the program. That shows up in recruiting.
Class of 2024 big man JT Rock paid attention through last season, when Garza broke the school scoring record. Iowa offered the Sioux Falls (SD) Lincoln High and South Dakota Attack AAU seven-footer a scholarship last week.
“Coach (Fran) McCaffery knows how to use all of his players really well,” Rock told HF. “Luka Garza is a great player. And alongside coach McCaffery’s offensive system, made a great combination that ended in a two-time national player of the year. I don’t think you can argue with that.”
Creighton, Iowa State, Nebraska and South Dakota State also have offered him a scholarship. He visited Iowa for its football season opener on Sept. 4.
“It was really cool to be able to feel the excitement and fan support that Iowa has for their athletic programs. I also enjoyed getting to meet the coaching staff and players,” Rock said.
He learned more about Iowa on the stop.
“I know that historically the Hawkeyes have a very successful program. Coach McCaffery and his team are coming off of a very successful season and are off to a promising start this year. The way the team uses the talents of each player on the court is also interesting,” Rock said.
Iowa assistant Kirk Speraw is leading the program’s pursuit of Rock. They’re building a good relationship.
“I would like to learn more about how the program runs on a day-to-day basis. I’m fortunate to have the opportunity to call coach Speraw when questions come up related to Hawkeye basketball. That’s been very helpful for me as I learn more about the program and the culture,” Rock said.
The head coach expressed to Rock why he felt the prep sophomore would be a good fit in the program. McCaffery watched Rock play in person on Sept. 22 during an open gym at his school.
“Coach McCaffery talked about how I move very well for being as tall and young as I am. He shared he feels I would fit into his offense very well, as a stretch big who can play both inside and out, with the ability to make outside shots and handle the ball a little bit as needed,” Rock said.
Rock also is researching the academic offerings at Iowa.
“I’m not sure what I would like to study (in college) at this time. However, I’m very interested in math and science, so most likely something related to those areas. It’s great that Iowa has so many areas of academics to choose from,” he said.
— South Dakota Attack (@sdattack) January 1, 2021
This dude has picked up a bunch of D1 offers this past couple weeks
How does he react? Stays in the LAB! 🎒🏀
— Shane Hennen (@Hennen_Workouts) November 18, 2021