Like father, like son: How Connor McCaffery found his role in the Iowa offense

Hawkeye Headquarters

It should come to no one’s surprise that Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery’s son, Connor, turned out to be such a high IQ player.

While the junior guard’s stat line doesn’t particularly jump out at you (3.2 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 4.4 APG), he does have the nation’s best assist-to-turnover ratio with at least 50 assists (5.18 ratio).

“I’ve always kind of tried to pride myself on someone who makes the right play regardless of the situation, regardless of who’s around me,” said Iowa junior Connor McCaffery. “That’s kind of my game and I pride myself on it.”

It’s a playstyle that seamlessly fits what the hawkeyes need in their starting rotation. With sharpshooters like Jordan Bohannon, Joe Wieskamp, and CJ Fredrick along with the nation’s top scorer in Luka Garza on the low block, a player with a pass first mentality is crucial.

“I’ve always been someone who tries to make the right play,” said Connor McCaffery. “When I’m playing with the people I have around me, it just makes my job easier. Every team needs roles players and I’ve kind of tried to embrace that and I think we have a lot of other guys who have done the same and I think that’s what makes our offense flow”

It’s a mindset that his coach, who knows him pretty well, spotted at a young age.

“I think he kind of always had it in him,” said Iowa head coach and Connor’s dad Fran McCaffery. “He would always come to practice when he was in kindergarten, first grade, second grade, third grade. He would watch film with me on the weekends with the staff. So there was something sort of engrained upon him.”

Connor still has a year and a half left at the University of Iowa, but will Fran’s oldest son follow in his footsteps as a coach?

“I think he would be a really good one,” said Fran McCaffery. “I think it would be hard for him to distance himself from the game. I think he would make a great coach. But to be truthful, I’m not sure his mother would encourage that career path.”

“She’s definitely objective,” said Connor McCaffery. “She’s not a huge fan of the idea. I feel like that’s why she has always put such a stress on my school work, so I wouldn’t have to get into coaching. But, I think that she would definitely be supportive if it ended up being something I want to do.”

Connor, Fran, and the rest of the Hawkeyes were scheduled to take the court on Thursday against MSU but that game has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns so now, Iowa will gear up for a Big Ten battle against Northwestern on Sunday.

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