CORONAVIRUS

Iowa State men's basketball sidelined by COVID-19, game at Kansas postponed

Cyclones are 0-5 in Big 12

Iowa State head coach Steve Prohm watches from the bench during a Big 12 Conference men's basketball game against Texas
Iowa State head coach Steve Prohm watches from the bench during a Big 12 Conference men’s basketball game against Texas Tech on Jan. 9 in Ames. (Associated Press)

AMES — Iowa State men’s basketball coach Steve Prohm was watching the Texas-Texas Tech game on Wednesday, since his own game against Kansas State was postponed due to the Wildcats’ COVID-19 problems.

Prohm had one thought while watching the Longhorns and Red Raiders entertain all those who watched — “We have to get back there. We have to get back to that level.”

No. 15 Texas Tech upset No. 4 Texas, thanks to some late-game heroics by Mac McClung.

Iowa State’s previous two games were against Texas and Texas Tech — the Cyclones lost both.

In fact, Iowa State has had one of the toughest stretches in college basketball to open up conference play. After a conference-opening loss to Kansas State, Iowa State fell to then-No. 8 West Virginia, No. 2 Baylor, No. 4 Texas and No. 15 Texas Tech.

Hence, Iowa State is 0-5 to start Big 12 play for the first time since the 2004-05 season.

And now, after the postponed Kansas State game, Iowa State has to postpone its game against No. 6 Kansas today due to COVID-19 problems within Iowa State.

“The priority for us is the safety and well-being of everyone in our program,” Prohm said in a statemernt last night. “While it is disappointing we won’t be able to play this weekend, we look forward to returning to competition when it is safe to do so.”

The Cyclones paused all basketball activities indefinitely and haven’t made any determination for future games.

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When Iowa State returns to play, who needs to step up for the Cyclones to finally notch their first conference win?

“Everybody. We all do,” Prohm said. “Everybody from Steve Prohm to (walk-on) Nate Jenkins. We all do. We have to raise our level, we have to take care of the ball better, we have to compete on the defensive end better. We’ve done that at times, but we have to be more consistent with it.

“There’s not one individual that has to step up. It has to be everybody.”

Iowa State guard Tre Jackson said he’s seen good energy in practice, even with the postponed game.

Now, the Cyclones just have to bring that on the court the next time they’re able to play a game.

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