Brunner Talks About Carver Swan Song

Greg Brunner will leave Iowa as it's all-time leading rebounder in another month or so, but he has two home games left this week for Hawkeye fans to show their appreciation. The Senior from Charles City met with the media at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Monday to discuss his memories in the Black and Gold, his legacy as well as that of teammates and close friend Jeff Horner, what he'll remember most about his career, and much more in this HN.com premium transcript.

What is it like this last week as you and Jeff play your last games at Carver?

It's a pretty emotional time for me, actually. It's going to be weird. Two more games here, and then I'm done. Hopefully we make a good run in post season. I want to drag it out as long as I can. But it's going to be unique that I'm done with this court and this atmosphere. I think we did everything right. I think we handed (the program) off the right way. The fans are really into it now, and people are starting to appreciate the program.

What is your legacy going to be when you leave this place?

I don't really know, to be honest with you. That's really not up to me. I don't even listen to people when they starting talking about that stuff because I'm still here. If people want to talk about it, they can talk about it when I'm gone, I guess. Some people probably say I'm bad. Some people probably say I'm good. It's in the eye of the beholder, I guess.

What do you think Jeff's legacy would be, if that's a little bit easier for you?

A driven, team-work guy that have full effort for the team all of the time; incredible heart; extremely good at showing what he was advertised as, I guess. He lived up to all of the expectations. He's leaving here as the assist leader. He's leaving here as a leader in a lot of categories. He's just a very important player to Iowa basketball history, in my opinion.

What about Northwestern being able to knock off Ohio State for you? Coach Alford said that Northwestern hasn't done much for you in recent years.

That's what I was saying to Jeff and Wieck (Sunday). Northwestern hasn't done anything nice for us since we've played them. We've beaten them once there. It would be a good way to end our relationship with those guys by them knocking off Ohio State. It's going to be a fun game to watch. But honestly, Penn State and Wisconsin are our main focus. Regardless of the outcome of the Northwestern-Ohio State game, if we lose either one of these games, it doesn't even matter. Penn State is playing really well now and Wisconsin is deadly in all aspects.

How do you feel you guys are playing?

We're playing fine. We went through a tough stretch, but I think we played four out of five games on the road. We won one of the road games. We were 2-3 during that. It would have been nice to go 3-2. But we're still sitting pretty. We have 20 wins and play two great teams in a row. Hopefully we can head into the rest of the season and tournament play relaxed and confident.

Coach said that with all the things that went on here, legal stuff, academics, transfers, whatever, he really credited you and Jeff with holding the team together. How difficult was that for you and for the team going through that process?

It was a hard time. But what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger. It's helped us. It's allowed Jeff and I to play extended minutes since we were freshmen. It's allowed us to go through everything that you can imagine. That's why I think we can prepare this team and showing them what it takes. It's helped us with our run.

How about the students and the fans being back after all that you've been through?

That's honestly the happiest memory that I think I'm going to have this year. The win-loss ratio, you're always going to think about that; contending for a Big Ten Championship. But playing in front of this crowd, those are the memories I'm going to have. It would have been tough for my four years to have all four like what happened the first three, maybe the first two and a half. This year has been incredible. It's everything that I could have dreamed and wished for. It's just going to be an emotional two days.

Did you see the three kids (at the Michigan State game who had their shirts off and the letters B-R-U painted on their chests)?

Oh yeah, yeah. I was laughing. I thought it was funny. I said a little something to them before the game. That's what we want them to be like. Haluska's name is a little bit too hard to spell. Mine is simple. Maybe we can get some girls with somebody else's name up there.


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