Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Greg McDermott lures son from UNI
By Eamonn Brennan
When Greg McDermott was the coach of Iowa State, his son Doug (not to make fun of anyone's name, because it's not like I have stones to throw, but I had no idea parents were still naming their kids Doug) wasn't planning on playing for his dad. Instead, the No. 29-ranked small forward in the class of 2010 was planning on heading up the road to Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa, where he would play for Ben Jacobson and a suddenly household-name Panthers program. And all was well in the breadbasket of America.
No more: Greg McDermott's decision to leave Iowa State for the vacant job at Creighton has thrown his son's recruitment to Northern Iowa out the window. Instead, the younger McDermott will try to follow the elder to Omaha. McDermott still needs to file a request for a waiver from his letter of intent, according to UNI athletic director Tony Dannen. Dannen said he hasn't spoken with Jacobson about the release. If UNI's process goes the way these things usually do, the Panthers will let McDermott out of his letter of intent, and the son will soon be playing for the father.
If you're UNI, this qualifies as a major bummer. Northern Iowa is not a school that typically lands nationally ranked talent. McDermott is that, one of the best 30 players at his position in the class of 2010 and a player that could have gone to a power-six school and had a nice, role player-ish career, if not more. Instead, McDermott selected from smaller schools and ended up landing at Northern Iowa, where he would have been an impact player this fall.
Instead, UNI must stand by as its former coach takes a job at a Missouri Valley Conference rival and his son, the Panthers' best 2010 recruit, joins him. It doesn't immediately shift the balance of power in the MVC -- Northern Iowa is still its premier program of recent vintage -- but it does bring Creighton immediately back into the conversation. Rivalries thrive on much less. This one should be fun.