Iowa Hawkeyes vs Iowa State Cyclones Predictions, Odds, Picks

  • The Iowa Hawkeyes are still unranked but having a good season. They lost their last two games but have the fifth-highest scoring offense in the NCAA.
  • The Iowa State Cyclones are also playing well this season. They are unbeaten and ranked #17 in the nation.
  • Iowa State did not make March Madness last season, but it looks like things are changing for the better this year.

Iowa Hawkeyes vs #17 Iowa State Cyclones Odds

Odds taken from DraftKings

Team Spread Total
Iowa Hawkeyes -3.5

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O 150

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Iowa State Cyclones +3.5

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U 150

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Iowa Hawkeyes vs #17 Iowa State Cyclones Predictions and Picks

The battle of the State of Iowa is going down this Thursday. Whenever Iowa and Iowa State face each other, people watch, and that is why I am writing about this game.

The casual observer would pick Iowa State to win this game because they are ranked and Iowa is unranked. Luckily, I am not a casual observer. Iowa is the better team and are not getting the credit that they deserve. The Hawkeyes score 15 more points per game than the Cyclones and have a significantly harder schedule. They are also playing at home.

All signs point to the Hawkeyes, which is why I am choosing them.

Pick:

Iowa beats Iowa State 78-71, Under 150 points.

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Iowa Hawkeyes vs Iowa State Cyclones

Head-to-Head: Iowa Hawkeyes vs #17 Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa Head-to-Head Iowa State
Fran McCaffrey Head Coach T.J. Otzelberger
7-2 (0-2, 13th in Big Ten) Standing 8-0 (0-0, 2nd in Big 12)
Leader (Per Game)
Keegan Murray (23.9) PPG Izaiah Brockington (16.0)
Keegan Murray (8.0) RPG Izaiah Brockington (7.5)
Joe Toussaint (4.1) APG Tyrese Hunter (5.4)
Joe Toussaint (1.6) SPG Tyrese Hunter (2.4)
Keegan Murray (2.2) BPG George Conditt IV (0.8)
Flip Rebraca (.594) FG% George Conditt IV (.667)
Tony Perkins (.538) 3P% Caleb Grill (.467)

Why Might the Iowa Hawkeyes Win?

The Hawkeyes win games by running up the score. They have a fast-paced offense and shoot well The problem is they do not play a lot of defense. As a result, they give up 70.1 points per game, ten more points per game than Iowa State.

Even though the Hawkeyes are coming off two straight losses (to #1 Purdue and unranked Illinois), they need to keep playing the way they have been playing the whole year. They need to be fast-paced, shoot the ball well, pass the ball a lot, and play defense when it matters. Of course, Iowa will need to fix their system at some point because the defense is incredibly important, but not today.

It is also worth mentioning Iowa forward Keegan Murray is the leading scorer in DI. I expect Murray to be a massive part of the offense in this game as he is in every game.

Why Might the Iowa State Cyclones Win?

I may have made it sound like Iowa State has no chance of winning this game in the predictions segment. That is not true. Iowa State is the underdog and on the road, but they can win this game. They are a good team, but they have a significantly easier schedule than Iowa.

There is one big thing Iowa State needs to do to win this game: Stop Keegan Murray. Murray is one of the best players in the NCAA, so it is imperative that Iowa State does whatever it takes to slow him down. If Keegan Murray plays well, Iowa State loses. However, if Iowa State stops him, they win. It is that simple for the Cyclones.

Hawkeyes Key Player: (F) Keegan Murray

Forward Keegan Murray is, without a doubt, the best player on his team. Murray is Mr. Do Everything. He scores, gets some steals, passes sometimes, gets blocks, and shoots well. He is very difficult to guard because he has many different offensive skills and very hard to score on because he is 6’8” with a 6’11” wingspan.

Murray leads his team in points per game (23.9), rebounds per game (8.0), blocks per game (2.2), minutes per game (26.6), and is one of the best shooters Iowa has to offer. The sophomore from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is a fantastic talent and the most important piece of his team. He will need to do it all against this tough Cyclones team. If he does not, and he struggles tonight, the Hawkeyes are going to lose and fall into a losing streak.

Cyclones Key Player: (G) Izaiah Brockington

Izaiah Brockington is no Keegan Murray, but he is really good. He is a talented scorer with 16 points per game and a solid rebounder with 7.5 rebounds per game. The 6’4” senior guard from Philadelphia also shoots well, hitting almost half of his shots and over 75% of his free throws.

Brockington is the key to success for the Cyclones. He runs the offense, so the offense’s efficiency falls on him. It is a daunting role, but he appears to be welcoming it. If Brockington can run an efficient offense and score a lot, Iowa State might have a chance to win. It will still be difficult, but victory will be within their reach.

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How To Watch Iowa Hawkeyes vs #17 Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa Hawkeyes vs #17 Iowa State Cyclones Information
What Iowa vs #17 Iowa State
Where James H. Hilton Coliseum, Ames, Iowa
When Thursday, December 9, 9:00 PM EST
How to Watch ESPN2

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Max Heering

Expert on Sports Betting Industry

Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]