CHICAGO — With the Big Ten Conference moving to a nine-game conference football schedule, Iowa athletic director Gary Barta reiterated Wednesday that it wouldn’t affect the Hawkeyes’ annual game against Iowa State.
Barta explained his scheduling philosophy at the Big Ten Conference spring meetings in Chicago.
“I’ll keep playing Iowa State, and now, the ninth Big Ten game will replace those others, whether it was Pittsburgh or Arizona,” he said.
After that, Iowa will continue to turn to turn the MAC or Nother mid-major conference. The Hawkeyes are scheduled through 2019.
NO NIGHT FRIGHT: Barta said the Hawkeyes would like to host a night football game, but were not offered. Schools can decline, but the final decision comes down to television executives and other schedule makers.
“Having a night game or two is definitely of interest,” Barta said. “We’ll play when we’re asked to play and we would welcome a night game if it came along.”
TEPID INTEREST: Could Des Moines host the Big Ten men’s basketball tournament? With the event moving around, including a stop in Washington, D.C. in 2017, any city could be a candidate.
“It’s not been discussed as a potential city,” Barta said of Des Moines. “Most of the discussion has been centered around, ‘We know it works in Chicago, we know it works in Indianapolis.’ So you’re going to see a steady diet of those two cities for sure.
“I think the next 10 years it’s about 20 percent in the East and 80 percent in the Midwest. There has been discussion about opening it up, making sure it’s competitive. And if Des Moines bids, great.”