For the first 18 minutes on Saturday, it had all the recipe for another close Iowa loss. The Hawkeyes managed only six rebounds, shots weren't falling and there was little movement on offense. For the final 22 minutes of the contest, Iowa rediscovered its identity and put on a show in front of a sold-out crowd.
The Hawkeyes hauled in 31 of the game's final 43 rebounds and out-rebounded Penn State 37-34. Focus, effort and attention to detail made all the difference for a group that continues to prove its grit throughout the course of the season.
"I thought we had more focus, more activity to the glass. We just wanted to get some offensive rebounds," Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. "I thought that was really good. Connor, Tony Perkins, Kris. We missed 15 shots in the first half and didn't get any back. Our defense was pretty good if you look at the numbers, but we just got destroyed on the glass. That had to change if we were going to win. That's the bottom line."