BOSTON — University of Iowa junior center Luka Garza is one of 30 men’s basketball players named to the Lute Olson Award mid-season Watch List. The award is presented annually to the nation’s top Division I player.
Garza (6-foot-11, 260 pounds) is the only player in the country averaging better than 20 points and 10 rebounds per game. He leads the Big Ten in scoring (22.5), and is second in rebounding (10.1) and double-doubles (8). The native Washington, D.C., has totaled 315 so far this season, the most by a Hawkeye after the first 14 games of a season since Fred Brown’s 394 in 1970-71.
Garza, who leads the Hawkeyes in 10 statistical categories this season, is three rebounds from becoming the 27th player in program history with 1,000 points and 500 rebounds. He is one of only five Big Ten student-athletes since the 2010-11 season to register multiple 30-point/10-rebounds games in the same season.
The award is named in honor of Hall of Fame coach Lute Olson, who won 776 games in 34 seasons, nine of which were spent at the University of Iowa. Olson is one of just 25 head coaches in NCAA history to win 700 or more games (all divisions) and ranks ninth on the Division I career victories list. He finished with a winning percentage of .731 and is one of only three coaches in NCAA history to record 29 or more 20-win seasons.
The 2019-20 Lute Olson National Player of the Year Award will be announced in April 2020 in Atlanta, site of the men’s Division I NCAA Basketball Championship.
Garza and the Iowa Hawkeyes compete at Nebraska tonight. Tipoff is scheduled for 8:07 p.m. (CT) at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, Nebraska