IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa center Luka Garza has been named Big Ten Player of the Week, it was announced Monday by the conference office.
Garza (6-foot-11, 260 pounds) averaged 33.5 points, shooting 55 percent from the field and 78 percent from the free throw line, and 8.5 rebounds in road games last week at Syracuse and No. 4 Michigan.
Garza scored a career-high 44 points last Friday in Ann Arbor — the most points scored in a game by an Iowa big man, third most in program history, most by an opposing player in Crisler Center history behind only Rudy Tomjanovich’s 48 points versus Indiana in 1969, and the most points scored by a Hawkeye since guard John Johnson poured in a school-record 49 points against Northwestern in 1970. Garza reached 1,000 career points in Friday’s game.
Garza’s 44 points are believed to be the most in a game by a Big Ten player since Purdue’s Glenn Robinson scored 44 against Kansas on March 24, 1994. Garza made 17 field goals versus Michigan, tying Bruce King (vs. Michigan on Jan. 31, 1976) for third most in a game in Iowa history. His 32 attempts tie three others (Fred Brown, Murray Wier and Charles Darling) for fourth most in a game in Iowa history.
Last Tuesday, Garza led Iowa to a Big Ten/ACC Challenge victory at Syracuse (68-54). The native of Washington, D.C., posted game bests in scoring (23) and rebounding (9).
Garza was twice named Big Ten Freshman of the Week during the 2017-18 season, but this marks his first Big Ten Player of the Week recognition and the first by a Hawkeye since Peter Jok on Dec. 12, 2016.
Garza and the Hawkeyes (6-3, 0-1) return to action tonight, hosting Minnesota (4-4, 0-0) in its Big Ten home opener. Tipoff is set for 7:10 p.m. (CT) on Mediacom Court at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.