Kansas vs. Iowa State College Basketball Betting Preview: Top 25 Battle in Big 12 Saturday
There are seven Big-12 matchups for those interested in Saturday’s college basketball odds, including No. 7 Kansas (16-3, 4-2) at No. 23 Iowa State (15-4, 4-2). Both teams are motivated to win this matchup and bolster their resume as March inches closer. Let’s dig into my Iowa State bets, and be sure to browse the best college basketball promos before betting to make sure you’re maximizing your chances of winning.
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Potential Kansas vs. Iowa State Bets: Spread, Moneyline, Total
Let’s begin with the Cyclones, who could continue to see positive regression from deep in this game. Iowa State has struggled in conference play, and the long ball has been a contributing factor, as they’ve connected on a mere 26.5% from deep, the second-lowest mark in the Big 12. That said, Tamin Lipsey is back. Lipsey suffered a shoulder sprain against BYU last Tuesday, forcing him to miss last weekend’s game against TCU. He returned to the lineup Wednesday but had five turnovers and failed to connect from the perimeter. Look for him to have a bounce-back game on Saturday.
To make matters worse for the Jayhawks, the Clones rank No. 1 nationally in quick points off breakaway steals. When they turn their opponents over, they tend to leak out for easy buckets in transition. That could come into play in this game if their on-ball pressure and knack for denying passing lanes bothers Kansas.
Iowa State can also exploit the Jayhawks on the offensive glass with Tre King and Robert Jones, two of the best in the conference at crashing the offensive glass. For reference, Iowa State collects the 56th-highest offensive rebounding rate across D-1. Self’s squad was most recently exploited in this regard by Cincinnati on Tuesday night when the Bearcats collected 14 offensive rebounds and turned them into 13 second-chance points. They could be in for a long day in Ames if they struggle to box out the Cyclones and limit second-chance baskets.
From a defensive perspective, T.J. Otzelberger‘s no-middle defense could be an issue for Kansas, which relies on getting easy buckets inside the arc. This is where Otzelberger’s squad is particularly stout, allowing opponents to score a mere 39.9% of their points inside the arc, suitable for fourth-best in the nation.
The Jayhawks offense underwent a slight tweak to their rotation earlier this month, inserting Johnny Furphy into the starting lineup and moving fellow frosh Elmarko Jackson to the bench. The switch has resulted in better spacing and more lanes for DaJuan Harris and Kevin McCullar to drive and score, and fewer double teams for Hunter Dickinson. The Cyclones’ defense forces opponents to take contested 2s with their no-middle concept and force opponents to beat them from the perimeter. Unlike BYU, who attempted 35 perimeter shots against Iowa State, Kansas is 317th in 3-point attempts per game, shooting just under 18 per contest. Self’s squad would much rather get inside looks than chuck it up from deep.
The Iowa State defense can be even more of an issue with Lipsey back. With his sticky hands and high motor, Lipsey leads the Big 12 in steal rate at 6.2%. The Jayhawks own the Big 12’s fourth-lowest turnover rate in conference play but scuffled against the similarly aggressive defense of Marquette, who forced Bill Self’s squad into 18 turnovers. The ball pressure Shaka Smart’s defense put on threw off the rhythm of the Jayhawk’s offense, and we could see a similar disruption caused by the Cyclones.
Utilizing Power Ratings
Haslametrics projects a final score of 76.8-69.1, favoring Iowa State. Erik Haslam, who owns and operates this college hoops analytics site, will make his return to Outside Shots in March.
Join TheLines.com’s managing editor Stephen Andress and senior college hoops writer Eli Hershkovich as they analyze this weekend’s slate further, on the latest podcast below.
Although the Iowa State offense leaves a lot to be desired at times, I expect their defense to dictate the pace of this one and speed up the Jayhawks, forcing them into mistakes. Let’s ride with the Cyclones for my college basketball best bets.
This spread was Iowa State -3.5 Friday night. The best available line is currently Cyclones .
Best of luck with your Iowa State bets this weekend!
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