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Thread: Iowa 2019-20

  1. #1

    Default Iowa 2019-20

    A good year for Bluder:

    Meanwhile, women’s basketball coach Lisa Bluder topped $1 million in total pay after a wildly successful season for the Megan Gustafson-led Hawkeyes.

    The 19th-year Iowa coach collected $260,000 in performance bonuses, the final $25,000 coming into the fold with Saturday’s announcement that she was the Naismith National Coach of the Year. Iowa’s Big Ten Conference tournament win plus an NCAA Tournament berth each triggered a one-year contract rollover; a two-year extension that takes her deal through the 2024-25 season.

    “I view (Bluder) very similar to the way I view Kirk in terms of longevity,” Barta said. “She doesn’t technically have a lifetime contract, but I anticipate — and I hope it works out — that she’ll end up retiring at Iowa.”

    Additionally, Iowa’s run to the Elite Eight was worth a 15% raise for Bluder — elevating her base pay to $653,531 next season, an $85,243 increase.

    Barta said women’s basketball bonus pay was an area “that maybe wasn’t budgeted,” but it should be noted that Iowa had strong attendance figures that should help the bottom line. Iowa averaged 6,797 fans in its 17 home games, a 24.7% increase from last season.

  2. #2


    Okay, this Megan Gustafson story is not about the Hawkeye's upcoming season; but it talks about Gustafson's basketball future after being cut by Dallas.
    Megan Gustafson was at the mall when she got the call.

    She knew right away what the call was about. She had seen three other Dallas Wings teammates receive the same call, then get told they’d be sent packing from the WNBA. Now, almost unfathomably, it was Gustafson’s turn to go meet the coach and general manager in the lobby of the team hotel.

    Wait … the consensus national player of the year in women’s basketball was getting cut?

    “To be honest, it was kind of like hitting a brick wall,” the greatest player in Iowa basketball history told the Register on Tuesday night from her parents’ home in Port Wing, Wisconsin. “I was doing so well for so long. It’s definitely been new territory for me, to be able to go through this.”
    The WNBA style of play favors athletic guards. So, Dallas decided 6-foot-3 Gustafson's game needed to become more perimeter-oriented.

    While it seems odd to drastically change the style of one of the most efficient post players to play the college game, Gustafson responded as you would expect … by working on her outside shot. And, she said, it improved significantly.

    But then on May 16, Dallas made two trades to bring in two experienced post players. In a 12-team league with only 12 roster spots each, good players can get squeezed out quickly.

    “Once the trade came in,” Gustafson said, “my heart just about dropped.”
    For now, the plan is to head to Iowa City and train with Hawkeye coaches and players. Her apartment lease runs through late July, anyway.

    WNBA or not, a lucrative professional career awaits overseas. The money is far better for women’s players internationally than it is here. It’s also a better fit for her style. She and her agent are in the process of finalizing those plans, which will begin in late September.

    "WNBA’s a little bit different, in that it’s a little bit more guard-oriented," Gustafson said. "That doesn’t really fit me as much. I’m ... really excited for overseas, because I’ll be able to be who I am, dominating the post down low.”

  3. #3


    I'm not a WNBA personnel wonk, but I watch quite a few league games and this surprises me. I understand that she is undersized for the post position, and she probably doesn't have the range or the agility to play forward, but she was soooo good in the college ranks (and such a hard worker) that it surprises me that some WNBA team won't be interested.

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by tripledouble View Post
    I'm not a WNBA personnel wonk, but I watch quite a few league games and this surprises me. I understand that she is undersized for the post position, and she probably doesn't have the range or the agility to play forward, but she was soooo good in the college ranks (and such a hard worker) that it surprises me that some WNBA team won't be interested.
    It was very unpopular back in December and January to declare that Megan wasn't a lock for the WNBA. The reactions were similar upon expressing doubts about Wagner or Bell. Some players' skill sets just don't translate very well and the tiny number of available jobs makes it damn near impossible to grab a spot.

  5. #5


    A Gustafson update: she signs with the Dallas Wings.

    Beset by injuries and other temporary absences, the Dallas Wings announced Thursday they had signed the former Iowa Hawkeye for a second time.

    Now, it's again the next stop, at least for a little while. The winless Wings (0-4) are without Tayler Hill (knee surgery) and Moriah Jefferson because of injuries. Rookie Arike Ogunbowale suffered an ankle injury Sunday and is doubtful for the team's Thursday game. They're soon losing Glory Johnson to international duty, and Skylar Diggins-Smith remains out after giving birth.

    So, they've called in reinforcements in a player they have scouted, have drafted, and yes, have cut.

  6. #6


    Some staff changes for the Hawkeyes with long time assistant Jenni Fitzgerald becoming a special assistant to the head coach.

    University of Iowa head women's basketball coach Lisa Bluder announced several staff changes on Friday. Abby Stamp has been promoted to interim assistant coach, Kathryn Reynolds has been promoted to director of player development, while associate head coach Jenni Fitzgerald will now serve as a special assistant to the head coach.

    The search for a new director of operations is ongoing.

    "I am excited to add a new position to our staff and find a different role for Jenni to assist our program," Bluder said. "With the change, we have found a way for Jenni to take a step back but keep her expertise within our program.

    "I am excited to have Abby begin her journey as an assistant coach. She is a loyal Hawkeye and has a very talented basketball mind."

    Fitzgerald, a native of Long Grove, Iowa, completed her 19th season on the Iowa sidelines in 2019. She has helped the Hawkeyes to 18 postseason appearances, including 13 NCAA Tournament berths and an Elite Eight appearance in 2019.

    Under Fitzgerald, Iowa perimeter players have garnered numerous awards. She has coached 14 players to a total of 31 All-Big Ten honors, including 11 first team selections. She has mentored six all-district honorees, one All-American, and four honorable mention All-Americans.

    Fitzgerald has coached four WNBA draft picks, including three athletes that made WNBA rosters. Sam Logic was a first round selection in 2015 (10th overall, Atlanta Dream).

    "After being in Division I basketball for the past 33 years – four as a player and 29 as a coach – I have decided it is time to take a step back from coaching and assume a different role within our basketball program," said Fitzgerald.

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