116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Joe Wieskamp bet on himself, as they say, and his wager paid off Thursday night.
Luka Garza stayed for his senior year at Iowa to enhance his status as a potential NBA player, and that appears to also have worked out.
The Iowa teammates are off to The League after being second-round selections in the 2021 NBA Draft. It’s the first time two Hawkeyes went in the same NBA draft since Ricky Davis and Ryan Bowen in 1998.
Wieskamp, a 6-foot-7 forward, decided to turn professional after his junior season with the Hawkeyes. He was taken by the San Antonio Spurs with the 41st pick of the draft.
Iowa hasn’t had a first-round pick since Davis. Wieskamp is the first Hawkeye to be drafted since Aaron White in 2015.
Garza, the National Player of the Year in the 2020-21 senior season after surprising some by spurning the NBA to return to Iowa City, went 52nd, to the Detroit Pistons.
There, he will be reunited with former Hawkeye power forward Tyler Cook, who played in 28 games for Detroit in the 2020-21 season.
Wieskamp became the first former Iowa high school player to be selected in the NBA draft since Ames’ Doug McDermott in 2014.
Wieskamp averaged 14.8 points and 6.6 rebounds for the 22-9 Hawkeyes last season, and led the team in steals with 29. He averaged 16.5 points in NCAA tournament play.
He made 73 of 158 3-pointers for 46.2 percent, and sank 49.5 percent of his 3s in Big Ten play. He made 184 career 3-pointers to rank ninth in Hawkeye history. He scored 1,283 points over his three seasons, starting all 97 games in which he played.
San Antonio’s first-round pick, at No. 12, was shooting guard Joshua Primo of Alabama.
Last year’s 41st pick also went to the Spurs, guard Tre Jones. He signed a three-year contract for $2.416 million, and played in 37 games.
The Spurs begin summer league play for drafted rookies, undrafted free agents and other invited players Aug. 3-6 in Salt Lake City before moving on to Las Vegas and playing in that 30-team extravaganza.
Garza, a 6-foot-11 center, led the Big Ten in scoring last season with 24.1 points per game. He also averaged 8.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocked shots. He made 44 of his 100 3-point attempts.
He became Iowa’s all-time scoring leader last season, finishing with 2,306 points and a career scoring average of 18.2 points, and ranks second in rebounds (931) and fifth in blocked shots (154).
Garza won every major National Player of the Year award, and was recently named the Big Ten’s Male Athlete of the Year, the first Iowa basketball player to get that honor. He is the lowest-drafted Wooden Award winner and Naismith Trophy winner since those awards were established, though two of the previous four Naismith honorees also were drafted in the second round.
Garza was one of just seven seniors among the 60 players drafted.
Detroit’s earlier draftees Thursday were No. 1 pick Cade Cunningham, a point guard from Oklahoma State, and No. 42 pick Isaiah Livers of Michigan, a forward.
Last year’s No. 52 selection, Kenyon Martin Jr., of the Houston Rockets, got a three-year contract for $4.198 million, with $898,310 guaranteed.
The Pistons start NBA Summer League play Aug. 8 in Las Vegas.
Every 2020 second-rounder who didn’t play overseas last season was on an NBA roster on 2020-21.
Theo Maledon was the No. 34 pick last year, and averaged 10.1 points as a rookie with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Martin averaged 9.3 points.
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