After an incredibly strong start to the season, Iowa is currently in the midst of a tough losing skid. Starting with their first matchup against Indiana back on Jan. 21, the Hawkeyes have now dropped four of their last five games.
What's the common denominator in all of these losses? Sophomore guard CJ Fredrick was not on the court.
Suffering a lower-leg injury in the first half of Iowa's first matchup with the Hoosiers, Fredrick has seen extremely limited minutes over the past few weeks. In fact, the Hawkeyes' lone win in this rough patch came when the sharpshooter briefly took the court. Playing just 12 minutes and scoring two points against Michigan State, Iowa notched an 84-78 victory.
Other than that win, things have looked pretty bleak for Fredrick and his squad. In the following two losses against No. 7 Ohio State and Indiana, the young guard was held out yet again with lingering injury issues.
On Wednesday night, Iowa will look to right the ship in a matchup with No. 25 Rutgers. Head coach Fran McCaffrey provided an update on Fredrick's status Tuesday afternoon.
C.J. Fredrick is day-to-day and the plan is for him to play, per Fran McCaffery. The Iowa coach said Fredrick will be that way the rest of the season.
— Scott Dochterman (@ScottDochterman) February 9, 2021
">Scott Dochterman of The Athletic, McCaffrey labeled his guard as "day-to-day" and indicated it would likely be that way for the remainder of the season.
Through 16 games this season, Fredrick has averaged 8.7 points and 2.3 assists on 24.6 minutes per game. While these numbers may not jump out at you immediately, he fills a crucial role in the Iowa game plan.
Shooting 50% from behind the arc, his deadly 3-point accuracy spreads the floor for the Hawkeyes. With a dominate player like 6-foot-11 Luka Garza underneath, Fredrick's presence on the court prevents double teams on the big man down low. Without the sharpshooter in the game, Garza's league-leading scoring numbers have significantly dropped over the past few matchups.
With Fredrick's day-to-day status, we'll have to wait until closer to game time tomorrow to know more.