IOWA CITY, Ia. — Isaiah Moss may have tossed his name into consideration for the NBA Draft, but the Iowa shooting guard vowed that he will be in a Hawkeye uniform next season.
“I’ll be back for sure. For sure,” Moss told the Register before the team banquet Tuesday evening. “If I don’t get drafted first.”
Moss surprised many last Tuesday when he announced he would test the NBA Draft process after a sophomore season in which he averaged 11.1 points while starting all 33 games.
He said he came to that decision after talking about it with his parents and siblings once the Hawkeyes' season finished March 1 with a disappointing 14-19 record. Moss has not hired an agent, giving him until May 30 to decide whether to continue his professional pursuit or return to Iowa for his junior season. He is a longshot to be drafted, and he knows it.
“It’s always been in the back of my head,” the 6-foot-5 Chicago native said of the NBA. “I have confidence in my game but of course I have to work on a lot more stuff. Really, I just want to get a lot of feedback, see what they think of me, what I need to work on. I know what I need to work on, but it’s good to hear from them.”
Moss has yet to be contacted by an NBA team. He said he’s prepared for whatever pro scouts do tell him, even if it’s not complimentary.
“It can only be positive, no matter what. I’ll work on whatever they tell me,” Moss said.
In the meantime, Moss said he’s been working hard on eating healthier to reshape his body. He also said he’s trying to improve his ball-handling and shooting.
What about defense, Moss was asked after a season in which the Hawkeyes struggled noticeably on that end of the court.
“Oh, yeah, defense of course. I should have said that first, shouldn’t I?” Moss said with a laugh. “Next year, I’m trying to be that guy that stops their best player.
“Coach (Fran) McCaffery always tells me … well, I can’t tell you what he says. But he always tells me you have to have that tough mindset that no matter who’s in front of you, he can’t score on you.”
Moss has shown that he can score in spurts in his two years as an Iowa starter. But he also had games in which he wasn’t a factor on offense. He admitted Tuesday that he would sometimes take criticism from coaches too much to heart.
“That was just me growing, really. I can say that when I first got here and a little bit the second year,” Moss said. “But now I look at it different. I know that (McCaffery) means well, whatever he says.”
Moss said he’s eager to apply whatever knowledge he gleans from NBA scouts. He’s already looking six months ahead.
“I can’t wait until next year,” Moss said. “Because we’ve got a lot of unfinished business.”