The deadline for underclassmen to decide whether to sign with an agent and stay in the NBA Draft or return to college is fast approaching (it's May 30, by the end of the day), which means it's time for Iowa's underclassmen to announce their plans. As expected, Isaiah Moss is returning to Iowa for his junior season:
Isaiah Moss makes official what he told @MarkEmmert a while back: That he'll return to Iowa for his junior season, per release. Moss: "The feedback I received from NBA personnel was extremely beneficial in making this decision while also helping me grow as a basketball player."
— Chad Leistikow (@ChadLeistikow) May 29, 2018
He told The Des Moines Register's Mark Emmert at Iowa's postseason basketball banquet in April that he planned to return for his senior season; he just confirmed that statement today. Moss was not invited to the NBA Scouting Combine and he did not have individual workouts with NBA teams, but he was still able to receive feedback from NBA personnel that he described as "valuable."
Moss was Iowa's fourth-leading scorer a year ago (11.1 ppg) and he posted gains in several categories including offensive rating, eFG%, TS%, assist rate, free throw rate, and 3-point shooting, as we noted when he announced his decision to take part in the NBA Draft process. Moss has several areas to improve upon, including defensive and increasing the consistency of his performances, and he likely received some good guidance from NBA scouts about the things he'll need to focus on at Iowa this year. Hopefully that focus will pay off and we'll see the best Isaiah Moss yet this season.
Moss may need to be at his best just to maintain his spot in Iowa's rotation. Iowa had limited options at guard last year due to the injuries and/or illnesses that afflicted Brady Ellingson and Connor McCaffery. But McCaffery is expected to be healthy and available next season and he'll be joined in the backcourt by two incoming freshmen in Joe Wieskamp, the highest-rated recruit of the Fran era at Iowa, and C.J. Frederick, a freshman gunner from Kentucky. Iowa should have more options to turn to in 2018-19 if there's a need for more production from the guard position.
Meanwhile, Tyler Cook, the other Iowa player testing the NBA Draft process, has yet to announce a decision about his plans for next season. According to the Iowa release discussing Moss' decision, Cook's decision "is expected by the end of the day tomorrow, before the May 30 deadline." Like Moss, Cook was not invited to the NBA Draft Scouting Combine, but he did take part in several individual workouts. He also hasn't offered any public comments about his decision since his initial announcement that he would be taking part in the NBA Draft process, so we don't have much indication of which way he might be leaning. We should know very soon what his exact plans are, though.