Tonight’s Northern Iowa-Creighton Missouri Valley game is more than just another conference battle. It’s all about relationships and emotions will be high in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
Creighton coach Greg McDermott is a Northern Iowa (UNI) graduate. He later coached UNI to three straight NCAA tournament appearances. McDermott put UNI on the national collegiate basketball stage.
McDermott left for Iowa State and UNI hired his top assistant Ben Jacobson. McDermott and Jacobson are dear friends. Jacobson signed McDermott’s son, Doug, last spring to play at UNI.
Dad McDermott was on the hot seat at Iowa State and jumped at the chance when Creighton called. Doug then wanted to play for his dad at Creighton. UNI and coach Jacobson graciously released Doug from his UNI commitment.
So the McDermotts return home tonight but wearing the visiting colors. Fans around Cedar Falls are excited about this game. How will they welcome or not welcome the McDermotts back to UNI? The nation can watch the reaction on ESPNU at 8. p.m. Central Time.
By the way, there is a McDermott still at UNI. One of Greg’s sons is a student there. Sounds like he will side with the family tonight. Good move. Dad might be paying his college bill.