Northern Iowa Panthers men's basketball
The Northern Iowa Panthers men's basketball team represents the University of Northern Iowa, located in Cedar Falls, Iowa, in NCAA Division I basketball competition. UNI is currently a member of the Missouri Valley Conference.
|Northern Iowa Panthers|
|University||University of Northern Iowa|
|Head coach||Ben Jacobson (15th season)|
NCAA Division I Division
|Location||Cedar Falls, Iowa|
|Arena||McLeod Center |
|Student section||Panther Mayhem|
|Colors||Purple and old gold|
|NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen|
|NCAA Tournament Round of 32|
|1990, 2010, 2015, 2016|
|NCAA Tournament Appearances|
|1990, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2016|
|Conference tournament champions|
|1990, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2016|
|Conference regular season champions|
|2009, 2010, 2020|
NCAA Division I TournamentEdit
|2004||#14||First Round||#3 Georgia Tech||L 60–65|
|2005||#11||First Round||#6 Wisconsin||L 52–57|
|2006||#10||First Round||#7 Georgetown||L 49–54|
|2009||#12||First Round||#5 Purdue||L 56–61|
#5 Michigan State
#3 Texas A&M
L 88–92 (2OT)
NCAA Division II TournamentEdit
Third Place Game
North Carolina A&T
W 71–64 (OT)
NIT Tournament historyEdit
|Teams Defeated||Lost to|
|2012||(7)||Second Round||(2) Saint Joseph's||(3) Drexel|
CIT Tournament historyEdit
|Teams Defeated||Lost to|
|Enola P. Pierce||1900–1902||1–3||.250||0|
|R. F. Seymour||1907–1909||14–15||.483||0|
|L. L. Mendenhall||1922–1924||27–7||.794||0|
|Arthur D. Dickinson||1925–1932
|O. M. "Hon" Nordly||1938–43
Ben Jacobson eraEdit
Jacobson's biggest coaching accomplishment to date was in the 2009–10 season, when the Panthers made a run into the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament highlighted by an upset of top national seed Kansas. ESPN.com columnist Pat Forde called the Panthers' win "the biggest tourney upset in years," and called the clinching shot by Panthers guard Ali Farokhmanesh "the gutsiest early-round shot in NCAA tournament history."
Jacobson also coached UNI as it became the first college program ever to represent the United States of America at an international basketball competition. In August 2007, UNI was chosen to be Team USA at the World University Games in Bangkok, Thailand. Donning the Red, White and Blue, UNI went 5–1 in the tournament, losing only to eventual gold medalist Lithuania, while posting wins over Angola, Turkey, China, Finland and Israel.
On November 15, 2014, Jacobson became the all-time win leader for a coach in UNI Men's basketball history. After recording a win over his alma mater University of North Dakota, he notched his 167th UNI victory. Additionally, in the 2014–15 season, Jacobson led the Panthers to their highest ranking in school history (#10) in the AP and (#9) in the Coaches Poll. UNI also in that season achieved the most wins in the school's history with 31. Jacobson has also been awarded the Missouri Valley Conference coach of the year award in 2009, 2010, and 2015.
On November 21, 2015, Jacobson led UNI to a victory over #1 North Carolina. The win was one of the biggest in program history and came in just the first meeting of the two basketball programs. Just four days later the coach hit another career milestone. After defeating the University of Dubuque in convincing fashion, the coach recorded his 200th victory at the university.
In the first round of the MVC tournament, Jacobson notched his 250th Northern Iowa career win against Evansville on March 1, 2018.
The school has several statewide and national rivalries. In Iowa, UNI used to play two, if not three of its Iowa neighbors for the Iowa Big Four men's college basketball mythical championship. The university also used to play either the University of Iowa or Iowa State University in the Hyvee Big Four Classic held at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. UNI’s MVC rivals are Loyola, Bradley, Drake, and Missouri State.