The Iowa Hawkeyes’ recent road trip didn’t quite go as planned. It started with a 93-77 loss at the hands of Ohio State and ended last night at Michigan State. A heartbreaking 63-61 loss to the Spartans, and a dreadful flight back to Iowa City. Forward Filip Rebraca said he didn’t fall asleep until 4 in the morning.

Now Iowa turns their attention to Rutgers. And while the fans and media are well aware of the Hawkeyes schedule, Fran McCaffery said he’s more zoned in on whatever game is next on the schedule.

“Half the time, I swear, I don’t even know who we’re playing next after that,” McCaffery admitted. “I don’t pay any attention to it. I find out from you guys, hey, we’ve got three in a row at home or we have a bunch of road games coming up. Whatever. I know we play Rutgers at home on Sunday. You win close, you lose close, you just …you’re very methodically in a businesslike manner just get ready for the next game. Don’t get too high and too low.”

The Hawkeyes could’ve been riding more of a high than a low. They shot just 6-for-13 from the charity stripe and 3-for-17 from three-point range. The final pair of triples came off the hand of Payton Sandfort, who missed what would’ve been the go-ahead makes.

The first came on a catch-and-shoot opportunity from the wing with eight seconds remaining. Connor McCaffery grabbed the miss and gave Sandfort another opportunity from the left corner just ahead of the buzzer, but the shot fell off of the front rim.

“Off the hand the first one I thought there’s no way it wasn’t going in,” Sandfort said. “We drew up a great play. How much else I could have done? I mean, it’s the Big Ten so we’ve got to get over it. Big one Sunday and just ready to move on.”

Iowa drops to 4-5 in Big Ten play but they’re still in the thick of things. Rutgers, who visits on Sunday, stands at second place in the conference just two games ahead of the Hawkeyes at 6-4. The Hawkeyes defeated the Scarlet Knights in Piscataway three weeks ago.

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