In his freshman season at Iowa, 6-1 guard Mike Gesell averaged 8.7 points and 2.6 assists per game for a team that reached the title game of the Postseason NIT. With Eric May being the lone key departure, Gesell and the Hawekeys are expected to be an NCAA tournament team in 2013-14.
Gesell’s offseason development hit a speed bump of sorts on Thursday, as he suffered a broken left (non-shooting) hand in a summer league game.
According to Iowa the injury is expected to sideline Gesell anywhere from four to six weeks, which could impact his availability for the Hawkeyes’ trip to Europe in mid-August. Towards the end of the 2012-13 season Gesell had to deal with a stress reaction in his foot, which resulted in his having to miss four games.
Fran McCaffery doesn’t lack for either depth or experience on the perimeter, with Anthony Clemmons also seeing time at the point and the presence of both Devyn Marble and Josh Oglesby at shooting guard.
The trip to Europe will help Iowa from a chemistry standpoint as they look to incorporate Wisconsin transfer Jarrod Uthoff and freshman Peter Jok into the rotation. Uthoff will be taking his second overseas trip this summer, as he’s competing with the East Coast All-Stars in the Four Nations Cup (in Estonia) next week.
The possibility of not having Gesell for those six games wouldn’t be ideal, but it wouldn’t be a killer either. The most important goal is to have Gesell healthy when practice begins in October, and that doesn’t look to be an issue.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.