Wednesday night’s matchup between Tennessee and Iowa, as you’re probably well aware, was on the basketball court. But at the end of the evening, it was an all-too-familiar football chant that you could hear loud and clear in Dayton Arena.
The Iowa Hawkeyes, playing inspired basketball in honor of their coach Fran McCaffery and his son, who underwent thyroid surgery earlier in the day, stormed out to an 8-0 lead in the first half, and held on to control the game for the first 15 minutes. But Tennessee, behind the balanced attack of Jordan McRae, Josh Richardson and Jarnell Stokes, cut the lead to 29-26 by the half. The second session was tight, and it took a Roy Devyn Marble jumped with 18 seconds left for Iowa to push it to overtime.
The extra five minutes belong to the Vols, with Stokes an McRae hitting key baskets early on to build a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. With time winding down, UT fans reminded everyone which conference their school plays in. That’s right, the S-E-C chant broke out.
Tennessee now gets UMass on Friday afternoon in Raleigh for its second round matchup. Iowa’s season is over.