IOWA CITY, Iowa - Say the name “Uncle Joe” around anybody associated with the Iowa men’s basketball team and they’ll know exactly to whom you’re referring.
Joe Fredrick, who is the uncle of redshirt freshman guard C.J. Fredrick.
To say that Uncle Joe has been a positive influence on C.J. Fredrick’s basketball career would be an understatement.
Joe Fredrick has been there every step of the way since C.J. Fredrick made it a goal to play college basketball, and C.J. has come a long way since being the eighth man on his high school freshmen team.
A 6-foot-3 shooting guard from Cincinnati, Ohio, C.J. Fredrick will make his 22nd start this season when Iowa faces Indiana on Thursday at Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Ind.
His emergence as a double-digit scorer is one of many reasons Iowa has exceeded preseason expectations with records of 17-7 overall and 8-5 in the Big Ten.
Joe Fredrick talked in detail about his nephew’s rise as a basketball player as the guest on Monday’s All-Hawkeyes/KCJJ radio show and podcast.
Joe Fredrick raved about C.J. Fredrick’s work ethic, saying it’s been the key to C.J.’s success.
Joe also spoke highly of Iowa coach Fran McCaffery, and said that C.J.’s decision to attend Iowa was based solely on McCaffery being the head coach.
In fact, C.J. Fredrick liked McCaffery so match that he originally agreed to come to Iowa without a scholarship for his first year, despite having scholarships offers from schools such as Xavier and Cincinnati.
Joe Fredrick’s relationship with Fran McCaffery dates back to the 1990s when Joe played for Note Dame and McCaffery was an assistant coach for the Fighting Irish.
Joe said that he and McCaffery formed an immediate bond at Notre Dame, and that all the players liked McCaffery at Notre Dame.
They have remained close friends ever since, and that obviously, helped convince C.J. Fredrick to be a Hawkeye.
Joe said he never tried to push his nephew to Iowa, but was thrilled when C.J. Fredrick picked Iowa.
Joe also raved about sophomore guard Connor McCaffery, who is Fran McCaffery’ son. Joe called Connor the glue of the team, and Joe feels that Connor is vastly under-appreciated by the fans, and by the media.
Monday’s interview with Joe Fredrick lasts for approximately 40 minutes and kicks off the 90-minute podcast.