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McCaffery: We had to outwork everyone for Woodbury

[ 0 ] November 9, 2011 |

Iowa signee Adam Woodbury

IOWA CITY, Ia. – Iowa basketball coach Fran McCaffery knew the deck was stacked against him in his recruitment of 7-foot-1 center Adam Woodbury. A deck that included North Carolina, Kansas, Ohio State and Florida.

“The only chance we had to get him was to outwork everybody else for him, because it was obvious to me early on that he was going to have multiple opportunities,” McCaffery said. ” You know, if you are sort of the best offer on the table at the time, you might still get a guy. But if every school in the country wants him, then you have to do something to separate yourself, and we were able to do that.”

Woodbury, rated among the top 50 prospects in the Class of 2012 by most recruiting services, signed his letter of intent with the Hawkeyes on Wednesday. So did Mike Gesell, a point guard from South Sioux City, Neb. Gesell is a consensus Top 100 national prospect. Woodbury and Gesell, AAU teammates and good friends, headline a Top 25 national class.

While Woodbury’s post play and ability to run the floor have McCaffery excited, Gesell’s potential as a point guard gets equal billing from the coach. Gesell played a lot of second guard on the AAU circuit this summer, with North Carolina signee Marcus Paige of Linn-Mar manning the point. They would flip-flop positions on occasion, “but the reality is you watch Mike Gesell, his future is at the point,”  McCaffery said. ” When he makes the NBA, it’ll be as a point guard, and he’s going to be have the ball and he’s going to be making plays and making decisions because he can think, and he’s got one of the most uncanny abilities to put a bad play out of his mind.”

Also signing were defensive stopper Patrick Ingram from Indianapolis, Ind.; point guard Anthony Clemmons from Lansing, Mich.; and forward Kyle Meyer from Alpharetta, Ga.

Here is the University of Iowa’s official release on the recruits.

All but Meyer had signed their letters by the time McCaffery met with the media at his scheduled news conference at 2 p.m. Wednesday.

“The thing I love about Anthony is he is a lock-down defender, but he can shoot the ball,” McCaffery said. “Anthony can get to the rim and dunk on your head. That gives us the flexibility  to play those guys (Clemmons and Ingram) together.”

McCaffery said Clemmons is a gamer.

“We needed that,” McCaffery said. “We needed help in the backcourt, we needed athleticism, and we needed that kind of toughness. But we also needed another  guy that could make shots, and that’s what he does.”

McCaffery first saw Ingram play at Hinkle Fieldhouse on the Butler campus. By accident. He was watching a player on another team, saw Ingram and thought to himself,  I need this guy.

“He is phenomenal at attacking the rim,” McCaffery said. “I mean, he’s an absolute power pack. He’s an assassin defensively. He will just take you right out of the game.”

In a statement released later Wednesday, McCaffery said that Meyer “has a tremendous skill set for somebody 6-10.  Any  time you recruit someone with that size who can dribble, pass and shoot… it gives me great flexibility in how I can utilize his talent. Kyle is athletic and comes from a very good program.  He also played on a very good AAU team and has been challenged.  I want my front court players to be able to make plays off the dribble and shoot the ball outside… not only can he can do that, but he also has a low post game. I’m really excited about Kyle.”

Mike Gesell


Anthony Clemmons

Patrick Ingram

Kyle Meyer


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Category: Iowa Hawkeyes men's basketball

About Rick Brown: Rick Brown covers men's basketball for The Des Moines Register and Hawk Central. He's married and the father of two. He also covers golf for the Register. View author profile.

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