2015 NCAA Tournament Preview: Northern Iowa Panthers

The Northern Iowa Panthers cemented their place in the NCAA Tournament by coming back to beat Illinois State in the Missouri Valley title game. This is the first time UNI has been to the NCAA Tournament since 2010, when they advanced to the Sweet 16.


Record – 30-3 (16-2 in MVC)

RPI – 15

Strength of Schedule – 152

Starting Lineup:

G Deon Mitchell (Sr.) –7.3 ppg, 2.4 apg

G Jeremy Morgan (So.) – 5.9 ppg, 3.2 rpg

G Matt Bohannon (Jr.) – 5.6 ppg, 1.5 rpg

F Seth Tuttle (Sr.) – 15.3 ppg, 6.7 rpg

F Marvin Singleton (Sr.) – 5.0 ppg, 5.1 rpg

Key Player:

Seth Tuttle

Tuttle has emerged as a National Player of the Year candidate by carrying Northern Iowa to a top 10 national ranking. The leads the team in points, rebounds, assists, and blocks, and is really relied on to do everything for this team. UNI will go as far as Tuttle will take them.

Biggest Strength:


Northern Iowa is pedestrian on offense, but they boast one of the best defenses in the country. The Panthers only give up 54.3 points per game, a mark that puts them fourth in the nation. They don't force many turnovers, but instead employ a tough system that cuts off driving lanes and doesn't allow many easy baskets.

Biggest Weakness:


Teams have had success against the Panthers by being physical with them down low. Northern Iowa ranks 322nd out of 350 Division I teams in rebounding, grabbing just over 30 boards per game. Their slow style of play will naturally limit that number a bit, but not that much.


Northern Iowa should receive a pretty high seed, paving the way for them to get to the Sweet 16. However, they don't have the offensive firepower to advance any further than that if they face a top seed.

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