Megan Gustafson’s No. 10 Iowa women’s basketball jersey is in the Carver-Hawkeye Arena rafters.
A jersey retirement ceremony was held for Gustafson, the 2018-19 National Player of the Year, after the 19th-ranked Hawkeyes’ 74-57 win over Michigan State in front of 13,420 fans.
“To come back was pretty surreal,” Gustafson said. “The crowd kept the energy today. Obviously I cried a lot today. This university, these girls, these coaches, they shaped me into the person I’ve become.”
Watch Big Ten Network’s coverage of the event here.
Here’s what Gustafson, Iowa athletics director Gary Barta and Iowa women’s basketball coach Lisa Bluder told the crowd.
“It felt incredible. This is a place that is so special to my heart and to come back here today to see what a great crowd that came out for our girls today, I’m just so proud to be a Hawk. Once a Hawk, always a Hawk. Today is really a dream come true, in so many ways.”
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“As we showed in the video, we announced at the end of the season last year we were going to do something special. We were going to retire Megan’s jersey. I heard over the announcement, it said Megan is the greatest women’s basketball player in the history of our program. I’m going to take it a step further. You could make a great argument if she’s not the most, she’s one of the most successful and decorated student-athletes in the history of the Hawkeyes, all sports.
“Megan, thank you for being an inspiration. Thank you for all that you did while you were here. Good luck to you in the rest of your career. Once a Hawkeye, always a Hawkeye.”
“This is a really special day for us. I’m just thrilled to have this many people come out to watch our team today, and I hope you’re going to all come back in a couple of weeks, right? Can I get your agreement on that right now? We really appreciate your support.
“It’s fun to honor Megan. Megan represented our program, she was the epitome of a women’s basketball player that we want in our program. She pursued excellence on the court and in the classroom all the time. She’s a double business major. I tried to talk her out of a minor because it would lighten her load her last year and she said, ‘nope.’ She went for that psychology minor anyway. But that’s the type of young woman she is.
“She’s not only one of the hardest working players that I’ve ever been around, she’s also one of the most humble and one of the best teammates and one of the kindest. I think sometimes people think kind doesn’t mean strong. Absolutely it means strong. Megan is the kindest person you’ve ever met. She’s one of the kindest and fiercest competitors, and I’m so thrilled to see No. 10 hanging from the rafters forever. Congratulations, Megan.”