Iowa-Indiana date set, Iowa-Purdue moves by 1 day

Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery and Indiana Coach Tom Crean shake hands before an NCAA college basketball game at Carver-Hawke
Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery and Indiana Coach Tom Crean shake hands before an NCAA college basketball game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa. (Brian Ray/The Gazette-KCRG)

IOWA CITY -- Iowa and Indiana will make up their postponed men's basketball game Feb. 27 at Assembly Hall, and the Hawkeyes' game against Purdue moves from March 1 to March 2.

ESPN will continue to carry the Iowa-Indiana game in Bloomington, Ind., and tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. Purdue and Iowa were slated to play at 7:15 p.m. March 1, but their game shifts to 1 p.m. March 2 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. BTN will air that game.

“Thanks to great teamwork, we were able to find a solution,” Iowa Athletics Director Gary Barta said in a statement. “I appreciate the work of (Indiana Athletics Director) Fred Glass and his staff at Indiana, Jane Meyer from our staff, the cooperation we received from Purdue to move our game, as well as the efforts of the Big Ten Conference staff and our television partners. "

Iowa and Indiana were scheduled to play Feb. 18 at Assembly Hall, but a 50-pound piece of metal facing fell from a corner and crushed several sets in the arena's lower bowl. The game was postponed indefinitely.

After multiple inspections, engineers deemed Assembly Hall safe enough to host a men's basketball game.

"Both our University and outside consulting engineers have advised us -- and we in turn have advised the Big Ten -- that the remediation of the problems at Assembly Hall will be 100 percent complete by early next week and that Assembly Hall will be safe and ready to host Thursday's men's basketball game without any limitations or restrictions," Glass said in a written statement.

Feb. 27 always was the likely makeup date for the teams, but the schools had to work through the league's television partners and enlist Purdue's help. Iowa has a road game scheduled for Feb. 25 at Minnesota. Three games in five days, including two on the road when classes were in session, seemed a bit much for any school.

Originally Iowa-Purdue was slated as a wild card choice of either March 1 or March 2. Only one week ago the league set March 1 as the date. The move gives Iowa three games in six days.

“We appreciate the efforts of all those involved in working together during this process,” Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery said in a statement. “I especially would like to thank Purdue’s administration and Matt Painter for agreeing to move our game. Being able to move the Purdue game to Sunday allows us to have two days of preparation for both the Indiana and Purdue games next week.

"Our players have conducted themselves with a great deal of maturity and have had a professional approach all season long, and expect that to continue the remainder of the year.”

Indiana is scheduled to play Feb. 25 at Wisconsin, so there's no scheduling disadvantage for Iowa other than travel. The Hawkeyes take charter flights to games, so the time travel is minimal.

“Both teams will be playing games on the 25th, so the playing field is level from that important perspective,” Barta said.To make room for the Iowa-Purdue game, BTN shifted Ohio State at Minnesota women’s basketball to the Big Ten Digital Network. ESPN also must move a men's basketball game on Feb. 27 to one of its internal networks. In the 8 p.m. time slot, ESPN previously was slated to air Temple at Louisville, while ESPN is scheduled to show Oregon at UCLA on ESPN2.

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