IOWA CITY, Ia. – Devyn Marble has officially escaped his father’s basketball footprint.
“I feel like he is no longer in my shadow,” Roy Marble said of his son, who was named to the all-Big Ten first team by both the coaches and media today.
That is something Roy never accomplished despite scoring a career-record 2,116 points at Iowa. He was a second-team pick in 1987 and 1988 and a third-team choice in 1989.
“It means a lot to me,” said Devyn, the Hawkeyes’ first first-team selection since Adam Haluska in 2007. “Not just the fact that he didn’t do it, but the fact that I did do it. It was a goal I came into the season with.”
Devyn was the Big Ten’s second-leading scorer in league games, averaging 18.3 points. He also finished in the Top 10 in assist/turnover ratio, steals, assists and 3-pointers made, even though he wasn’t in the Top 10 in minutes played. Marble scored in double figures in the first 17 conference games this season, with eight games of 20 points or more.
Devyn didn’t know his dad had not been a first-team all-Big Ten selection until he was reading Iowa’s media guide about a month ago.
“I was looking at the first team and I didn’t see him,” Devyn said. “I didn’t come into the season saying I’m going to do something my dad didn’t do, because I didn’t realize it.”
Motivation came from a different source. A third-team all-Big Ten pick by the coaches as a junior, Marble wasn’t on the preseason all-league team released at media day in October.
“It was baffling to me,” Marble said. “So I just came in with the mindset that I was going to show I was the best player in the conference.”
Marble was in contention for that honor, but it went to Michigan’s Nik Stauskas.
Iowa junior forward Aaron White was a third-team selection by coaches and the media. He was a third-team pick by the media last season. White was 12th in scoring in Big Ten games at 13.3 points, third in rebounding at 7.2 and fourth in field-goal percentage at .534.
Marble is sixth in career scoring at Iowa with 1,662 points, and needs 14 more to pass Ronnie Lester and move into fifth. The Marbles are the only father-son tandem in Big Ten history to eclipse 1,000 career points.
Asked to play three different positions during his career – small forward, shooting guard and point guard – Marble has improved his scoring numbers each season.
“He’s gotten stronger, and he’s incredibly cerebral,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “That’s something that you never really know until you get your hands on a guy. Does he really know how to play? Does he really understand how he fits with other people on the floor? Does he really know how to prepare? That’s the one thing, when I talk to NBA people about him, that I dwell on. Because he has all those qualities, and to me that’s why he’s great.”
Iowa assistant coach Kirk Speraw, whose specialty is skill development, said that Marble’s confidence has never been an issue.
“He’s not afraid of tough situations,” Speraw said. “And he always steps up to the challenge. He doesn’t always complete the play, but he’s never afraid to make the play. If he has an off-half or an off-game, he has that ability to bounce right back.And his failures never linger very long. He’s continued to work on all facets of his game. I think he’s played outstanding basketball this entire year.”