Iowa to play Utah in men's basketball at the Sanford Pentagon next season

Mar. 25—SIOUX FALLS — The Iowa men's basketball team will return to the Sanford Pentagon to play a recent opponent next season.

The Hawkeyes will take on Utah in a non-conference contest on Dec. 21. It'll be the third time the two teams will meet in their program history, with the Utes having won both prior contests back in 1964 and most recently in this year's National Invitation Tournament.

"(Iowa's) fan base brings an incredible amount of energy to Heritage Court every time, and the Utes have a rich history of basketball excellence and are now led by a coach who knows South Dakota well," said Jesse Smith, vice president of operations for Sanford Sports. "Thank you to head coaches Fran McCaffrey and Craig Smith for bringing their teams for what will be another premier college basketball event."

Iowa (19-15) advanced to the second round of the NIT before falling to Utah 91-82 on Sunday, March 24. The Hawkeyes are 2-1 in games played at the Pentagon, picking up victories against Colorado in 2017 and Utah State in 2021. Their lone loss came at the hands of a No. 1-ranked Gonzaga team in 2020.

Utah, currently members of the Pac-12 Conference, is 21-14 and will host VCU in the quarterfinals of the National Invitational Tournament on Wednesday, March 26. Utes' head coach Craig Smith has coached several times at the Pentagon during his previous tenures at Utah State and South Dakota.

"We are looking forward to returning to Sioux Falls and facing an excellent Utah program," McCaffrey said. "The community and Sanford Pentagon staff always provide a first-class experience for our fans and student-athletes."

"We are thrilled to be playing the University of Iowa in a neutral court game in Sioux Falls, S.D.," Smith said. "The Sanford Pentagon is one of the premier arenas in the country. The people involved with Sanford that put on this event are first class in every way. We are looking forward to having a great basketball experience."

In addition to the meeting in the NIT this season, the teams last played on Dec. 29, 1964, at the Los Angeles Classic. The Utes downed the Hawkeyes, 92-88.

This is the second NCAA Division I event announced for the 2024-25 season. The Iowa women's basketball team will play Kansas on Wednesday, Nov. 20.