After No. 5 Iowa’s 77-73 victory over No. 25 Wisconsin on Sunday, the school announced that it would retire No. 55 from Luka Garza.
Garza, a Wooden Award contender who finished with 21 points and 16 rebounds against the Badgers, said he was excited after Fran McCaffery broke the news to him after the game.
“Honestly, I wasn’t expecting that at all,” Garza said after the game. “I didn’t realize it was a plan or that it was going to happen. I was really happy to win the game. For the coach to tell me that, it was a surreal feeling. Time slowed down when I heard those words.
Garza has helped Iowa, which has won seven of its last eight games, build key momentum to enter this week’s Big Ten tournament. The victory also cemented the third seed in the Big Ten tournament for the Hawkeyes. Garza, a 6-foot-11 big man, has hit 43% of his 3s this season.
“It was a very emotional moment for both of us,” McCaffery said. “It is incredibly comforting for me to see what he has accomplished.”
No one will ever wear the number 55 again.
– Iowa Basketball (@IowaHoops) March 7, 2021
Sunday’s victory featured Garza’s 12th double-double of the season. He leads the Big Ten in scoring and is third in the nation.
Iowa improved to 20-7, 14-6 in the league and will open its roster for conference tournaments in the quarterfinals in Indianapolis on Friday.
Associated Press contributed to this report.