CEDAR FALLS — A university official confirmed Wednesday that Northern Iowa sophomore point guard Juwan McCloud has asked for his release from the men’s basketball program.
At the center of McCloud’s decision was an urge to move closer to home in Germantown, Wis. McCloud also explained that he felt like he owed it to himself to try something new.
“I just want a chance to get to see if I can do the things I wanted to do at a different program,” McCloud told The Gazette. “Just test the waters out, and what situation would be better for me than being here at Northern Iowa. I just really want to try something new. I just feel like these last two years (at UNI) just weren’t for me necessarily. Not in a bad way. I just feel like I owe it to myself to try something different.”
The 5-foot-11 point guard started 54 games during his two seasons as a Panther, averaging more than 20 minutes per game in each of his two seasons while scoring a career-high 6.7 points per game this past season. McCloud missed the final six games of UNI’s season with a back injury.
Wisconsin-Milwaukee, near McCloud’s home of Germantown, is a school he’s said to have his eyes on as he looks for a different opportunity after what he described as a mutual parting of ways with the Panthers on Wednesday.
“Nothing but class and love out of the (UNI program), and that’s what I expected,” McCloud said. “That’s the reason I did commit here, it is such a great program. They respected my decision and no bad blood between any of us.”
McCloud’s departure opens a second scholarship for the Panthers in 2018-19 and clears a path for top-100 recruit AJ Green of Cedar Falls to assume point guard duties as a freshman next season.