Oglesby Comes Up Big For Hawkeyes

By Scott Dochterman, Reporter

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- No player received more negative feedback last year than Iowa guard Josh Oglesby, who shot 26.9 percent from 3-point range. But the junior from Cedar Rapids has reversed his fortune completely.

Oglesby has drilled 12 of 20 3-point attempts (60 percent) this year, and he's altered the outcome of Iowa's last two games with big shots. Sunday, Oglesby had his most impressive performance. He made his first four 3-point attempts, including two in a 29-second span late in the first half. Those 3-pointers — the second with 3 seconds left in the half — chopped a Minnesota lead from eight points to two.

All five of Oglesby's 3-pointers arrived at critical junctures and his first four 3-pointers came when Iowa trailed Minnesota. Oglesby's first 3-pointer from the top of the key gave Iowa an 11-9 lead early in the first half. His second from the left wing brought Iowa within one point at 25-24. His third (right corner) and fourth (where he circled around a defender and shot from the left wing) were dramatic (as noted above). His final 3-pointer took the Hawkeyes' tepid six-point advantage to nine points with 5:35 left in the game.

It's a remarkable turnaround for a player who struggled mightily last year and suffered a broken right foot in early November. He didn't play his first game until Dec. 22. There was even serious talk that Oglesby should red-shirt. Confidence and an improved mindset are among the factors why the 6-foot-5 Oglesby has been successful.

"Well, I think it's a combination of things," Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery said. "No. 1, he is more experienced. He's healthy now. He's been through it. But he's a talented player. I mean, I've been saying that over and over. His defense (Sunday) was nothing short of spectacular. It was the same thing against Ohio State. We kind of look at him and say, 'OK, is Josh hitting 3s,' and then gauge him on that only. I don't. He's not a mistake maker. He defends, gets a huge offensive rebound. He just has an incredible feel and sense of how to play."

"There's a lot of people talking about me, doubting me and stuff like that," Oglesby said. "I'm just going to keep working hard and playing and hopefully keep winning."

Oglesby secured a late rebound off a Devyn Marble missed 3-point attempt and initially considered going up for the putback. Instead he brought it back out and killed time off the clock. Perhaps his most underrated play didn't end up in the stat sheet. With Iowa leading 56-53, Oglesby passed up a shot and instead made a terrific pass down low to Gabe Olaseni, who put the ball up but was fouled. The shot didn't fall and Olaseni went to the free-throw line, so Oglesby didn't get the assist. But he deserved one.

Read more: http://thegazette.com/2014/01/20/3-takeaways-iowa-minnesota/#ixzz2r5FZhgZ1
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