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A tweet from former Iowa men's basketball player Devyn Marble Monday night set off damage control in the UI athletics department Tuesday.
'I'll never watch another Iowa game in my life with the amount of disrespect that school has shown me and my family. Love the fans but I'm in no way affiliated or connected to the university,' Marble wrote on Twitter.
Marble, who played at Iowa from 2010 to 2014 and was a two-time captain, didn't elaborate as of midafternoon Tuesday. The tweet came a day after Iowa Athletics Director Gary Barta announced Sunday that current Hawkeye Luka Garza would have his No. 55 jersey number retired.
Last month, Garza passed Roy Marble as Iowa's all-time leading men's scorer. Marble, who died in September 2015 to cancer at age 48, had been the Hawkeyes' scoring leader since 1989. His number has not been retired.
'We have learned since Sunday that Roy Marble's family was hurt and feeling disrespected since that day,' Barta said Tuesday.
'I just want to take a moment and share that absolutely, that disrespect was unintentional and to publicly apologize for it. Fran (McCaffery) and I have also reached out to the family privately and shared those same feelings of apology. ... and also share with them some of the things that we're working on and planning for moving forward.'
Barta said he had tried, but had been unsuccessful in directly reaching Devyn Marble as of Tuesday afternoon.
'When I arrived in 2006 there were three players who consistently came forward,' Barta said, 'who were brought forward by fans and family members indicating that they should have their numbers or jerseys retired. And it was Roy Marble, Murray Wier and Chuck Darling.
'All three of those, through our university process, do not meet the criteria for those retirement requirements.'
Wier was a first-team All-American in 1948, Darling in 1952.
In 2015, Barta said, 'I shared a vision that we have and continue to have to create a display in Carver-Hawkeye Arena when we renovate the concourse, to pay tribute to a lot of our greats including Roy and Murray and Chuck. We put a temporary display that's still up there today, but we have not yet renovated the concourse, obviously.
'This spring and summer I'll sit down with some of our former players, some of our longtime staff members, historians that have been around here a long time, and really go through and discuss and finalize how we can honor those three, and then make sure there's not somebody else that we're leaving out.'
Knowing Marble had cancer, Iowa held a halftime ceremony celebrating him at a Hawkeyes game in March 2015. Barta presented him with a framed Iowa jersey with his No. 23.
Marble's teammate and classmate, B.J. Armstrong, had his No. 10 jersey retired in 1992 while he was a Chicago Bull, though the number remained in circulation. Chris Street's No. 40 was the last number retired by the school, after he died in a 1993 automobile accident.
Armstrong and Marble were never first-team All-America or first-team All-Big Ten.
'I don't envision retiring any more jerseys or numbers in any sports,' Barta said in 2015. 'We haven't done it in over 20 years. We've developed this wall of honor concept that we're going to play out.'
Then came record-shattering Megan Gustafson in women's basketball and Garza on the men's team. Gustafson's No. 10 was retired last January.
As for Roy Marble, 'When I first got here, he is one of the first people I reached out to on a number of different levels,' McCaffery said last month.
'He would have appreciated Luka Garza in a number of different ways. They would have gotten to know each other and he would have loved the kid as a person and his character but then his work ethic and tenacity and consistency.
'I wish he was here to see it.'
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