Peterson was ‘frustrated’ at Iowa, likes fit at Arkansas

Iowa's Jeff Peterson, left, and Wisconsin's Joe Krabbenhoft go after a loose ball during the first half of the teams' game Feb. 11, 2009, in Madison, Wis. Peterson suffered a pulled hamstring in the game, which turned out to be the final game of his Hawkeye career. (AP Photo/Andy Manis)

Iowa's Jeff Peterson, left, and Wisconsin's Joe Krabbenhoft go after a loose ball during the first half of the teams' game Feb. 11, 2009, in Madison, Wis. Peterson suffered a pulled hamstring in the game, which turned out to be the final game of his Hawkeye career. (AP Photo/Andy Manis)

Former Iowa guard Jeff Peterson said he was frustrated at times during his two-year tenure with the Hawkeyes. That’s why he left the school and will transfer to Arkansas.

Peterson called the situation at Iowa “unfortunate.”

“It’s just that whole atmosphere down there,” Peterson told The Gazette and KCRG. “I think it will fit me a little bit better.

“I think the main thing at the end of the day is I’m more comfortable and more happy.”

Peterson, who stands 6 feet, earned a scholarship with Arkansas, but will not play next year because of NCAA transfer rules. He can play two more college seasons.

Peterson was one of four Iowa players to leave the school since the end of the basketball season. Joining Peterson in the exodus was Jake Kelly, Jermain Davis and David Palmer. Peterson started Iowa’s first 25 games at point guard before pulling a hamstring against Wisconsin, which ended his season.

“I say that I wasn’t fully happy with the whole situation,” Peterson said. “But I think I can be really happy at Arkansas.

“During the season I continued to give it my all. I had 11 guys on the team … I couldn’t let them down, just for personal reasons. It did get frustrating, but I definitely didn’t give up.”

Peterson said he and other players discussed the team’s situation before he thought about leaving, but it wasn’t until after the season, he said.

“I guess before the final decision was made, obviously rumors started circulating,” he said. “So there was some type of discussion between everybody.”

Peterson finished third in scoring with 10.6 points a game and led the team with 106 assists. He suffered a broken left wrist in the Big Ten opener at Ohio State but played through it until his hamstring injury. He had surgery on March 17 and still wears a cast over his left wrist.

The injury prevented Peterson from passing the ball and dribbling effectively.

“Just anything with that bending motion,” he said. “I couldn’t get full range. I had less than half range during the season, so at times it really bothered me. But I just tried not to come up with any excuses and get through it. It was painful at times.”

Peterson took only one visit because he wanted to focus on his classes, he said. Peterson was named academic all-Big Ten this year. He will attend Arkansas’ business school. Arkansas is about two hours from his hometown of Springfield, Mo., but he said Arkansas’ location didn’t enter into his decision.

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9 Responses to Peterson was ‘frustrated’ at Iowa, likes fit at Arkansas

  1. Ben says:

    What a liar. He can have fun down at Arkansas. They have a stud PG who started as a freshman this year. He’s better than Peterson, so Jeff can ride the pine.

  2. Joshua says:

    I don’t blame Jeff at all. Iowa sports are a joke and we all know it. We hired Lick and Minny hired Tubby and look who has a top 25 recruiting class? Iowa is happy to compete and maybe win in the big ten a little. Where is the PASSION? Why are we not trying to win a national title? Why the hell aren’t we saying all the right things and why are losing all of our top guys year after. State is killing Iowa is keeping guys and now recruiting Colvin and Gillstrap are studs and Brackins is coming back.

  3. Philbin says:

    Truth be told, Peterson was a turnover machine during both of his seasons at Iowa in Lickliter’s “slow” system.

    Does he really think that will change playing in an up-tempo system?

  4. Bellanca says:

    Is there a reason why no Iowa reporter ever asks a coach or player why or how?

    Why was it frustrating, what is better about Arkansas, how is life improved?

    Who, what, when, where, why, and how were the guideposts offered to me during J-school. What’s operative at the Gazette?

  5. scottdo says:

    Congratulations Bellanca for learning the 5 Ws and the 1 H in J-school.

    There’s a big reason why those reasons don’t end up in print or online: because he won’t say it on the record. The questions are asked, but he chooses to take the high road and not make comparisons.

    Why, you might ask? Just take a look at some of the comments about Jeff Peterson on this blog or any message board. If he publicly admits why he’s leaving Iowa, he’d be more vilified than he already is. He said he was frustrated at Iowa and feels more comfortable at Arkansas. On the record, that’s as much as we’re going to get from him.

  6. […] Jake Kelly, a two-time Big Ten Player of the Week winner, is leaving the school for Indiana State. Jeff Peterson, who started the first 25 games at point guard, is transferring to Arkansas. Back-up guard Jermain […]

  7. matt says:

    i agree. iowa sports IS a joke. always will be. i must agree 200% with the other comments. “We hired lick, Minnesota hired the tub – and now they are on the move”. maybe we should go after KEntucky’s latest cast-off? is he still available? i never thought i’d say that anyone could be WORSE than the great steve all-fraud. i was wrong. a team losing five players in 2 years under mysterious circumstances is cause for alarm. but one thing hawk fans need to realize – we are never going to be a Kansas, UNC, Duke, etc. can’t happen. the current attitude at Iowa – where you can limp through a season, then just get a hot hand in the tournament and go to the dance with an automatic bid – will prevent it from happening. i remember a few years back there was some discussion about the hawkeye ‘classic”. you remember the annual series of course. Iowa hosts 3 high school teams and proceeds to beat the c.r.a.p. out of them (minus one year) to win their own ‘tournament’. remember people asking why that ‘classic’ couldn’t be more like a ‘maui invitational’ or ‘great alaskan shoot-out’? the powers that be said, “no one wants to come to Iowa in december to play a basketball game”. really? like it is THAT much warmer in ALASKA? what a bunch of hogwash. MONEY talks, BS walks. i will bet you could get arizona, UNC, Duke, and the others to come to Iowa to play a game – if the price was right. that’s all college sports is anymore – MONEY. all about the money. the real reason Iowa doesn’t want a ‘real’ tournament is because they don’t want to get their butt beat all the time…which happens now anyway, so it would be no different

  8. […] up the court or slow it down in a half-court set. He’s a different player from Jake Kelly or Jeff Peterson in that he’s a natural point […]

  9. James Bower says:

    Great blog, reading it through RSS feed as well

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