Marble, McRae headline Iowa-Tennessee match-up
By: Scott Dochterman and Scott Saville
DAYTON, Ohio Iowa's Devyn Marble and Tennessee's Jordan McRae are built the same, play the same position and post the same results without having the same game.
Marble, a 6-foot-6 first-team all-Big Ten guard, averaged 17.3 points a game this year. McRae, a 6-6 first-team all-SEC guard, averaged 18.6 points a game. But that's where the similarities stop, Tennessee Coach Cuonzo Martin said.
"Two different players, though, very talented," Martin said. "Marble's a guy, 6-7, can run some point, play the 2, play the 3, and some cases can possibly play the 4. I'm not sure they play him at the 4, but with his size and his ability to hand the ball, can make shots, crash the glass, great job of catching and shooting. And I think his skill level definitely translates to the next level.
"Jordan McRae's case, (6-6) guard that scores in transition, doesn't run the point for us. Different players, but their approach is the same as far as how they score the ball, they're both in attack mode."
Iowa's current group of players remain close to their former teammates who were not afforded the opportunity to play in the NCAA tournament.
Former team captains Matt Gatens, Eric May and Jarryd Cole plus Devon Archie have reached out to Iowa's seniors, and the team has responded favorably. This is the first time since 2006 the Hawkeyes have played in the NCAA tournament.
"They're like my big brothers," Iowa senior Melsahn Basabe said.
"I think Jarryd Cole in particular really took Melsahn and Zach (McCabe) under this wing and tried to show them how to do it," Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery said. "And so did Matt and Eric with regard to Dev, and you could see it's been reflected in their play and their development."