Luka Garza Returns to Iowa Hawkeyes in 2020-2021
You couldn't ask for better a way to kick off the work week. Hearing the news that Iowa Men's Basketball center Luka Garza has committed to wearing the Hawkeye jersey for the 2020-2021 season is just what we needed on this Monday August 3, 2020.
Word spread quickly yesterday, a sleepy Sunday afternoon with Mitch Fick from Iowa's News Now quick to be buzzing about Garza's Tweet.
HawkeyeSports.com reported that Garza, the 6' 11" senior shared these words:
“My heart is in Iowa City,” said Garza. “I love this place too much to leave it. I love my teammates, coaches, community, fans, and the university. It would have been way too hard to close the book without the last chapter.”
That's pretty cool coming from the guy who helped the University of Iowa men’s basketball team win 20 games and a likely tournament bid, had it not been for the Covid-19 pandemic.
We were all short changed in 2020 of not having the opportunity to see what Luca Garza could have done. We missed the chance to see what he might have contributed in possibly winning the Big Ten conference or playing deep into the NCAA final four.
Let the Peacock fly!
Over the past year, Luka's dad Frank Garza has had several interviews, shedding light and meaning about their trademark phrase “let the peacock fly“ and how it applies to literally everything in our lives. It's just as much about the journey as it is about the destination.
Part of that journey was how Garza spent the summer, navigating a flight or two, going through the “NBA process“, visiting five major league teams and several European league basketball clubs. It's likely that what the pro teams saw in him was just as impressive and valuable as the insights that Luka picked up on his journeys.
“I need to continue to improve my lateral quickness and foot speed to be able to excel in guarding ball screens at the next level,” Garza said
HawkeyeSports.com reports that Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery heaped praise upon Lucas and his decision to return for his senior year, calling it “incredibly unselfish“. The coach knows well that Luka's opportunities to advance professionally are very real.
Yes Garza's decision to stay show him thinking more maturely, and on several levels. It's more that just about what he can bring to help his teammates experience one more shot at another winning season. After all, it's 2020.
We're all in a space and time facing an uncertain future. There is something redemptive in Luka's decision, perhaps it's in seeing how we can all still find common ground, if only in the pure form of basic athletic competition.
Who really knows how many games we'll see in the 2020-2021 Big 10 basketball season. With unanswered questions popping up every week, only time will tell.
But starting the week with news that Luka intends to play his senior year in an Iowa Hawkeyes uniform is truly a gift for all of us. It's what you get when you let yourself imagine the possibilities. Let the Peacock Fly!