Iowa Hawkeyes (1-0 SU, 0-0 ATS) vs. Iowa State Cyclones (1-0 SU, 0-1 ATS), 12:00 p.m. EST, Week 2 NCAA Football, Saturday, September 10, 2011, Jack Trice Stadium, Ames, Iowa
by Badger, College Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: IA -6.5/Iowa St. +6.5
Over/Under Total: 43.5
The annual battle for bragging rights in the state of Iowa will once again take place this Saturday in Ames, when the Iowa Hawkeyes travel west to take on the Iowa State Cyclones in Jack Trice Stadium.
The Hawkeyes kicked off their season last Saturday with a, 34-7, trashing of Tennessee Tech that was actually delayed in the third quarter than cancelled outright because of the monsoon-like rain much of the country experienced on opening weekend. Quarterback James Vandenberg threw for two scores, receiver Marvin McNutt caught two touchdowns and the Iowa defense added an interception for a score in a game that would have turned more ugly had Mother Nature not shown its mercy on the Golden Eagles from the Football Championship Series (FCS).
The Cyclones also won in their season opener last week, but it was anything but easy and pretty, as it took every inch on the field and every ounce of adrenaline from the sideline for them to get past FCS and in-state foe Northern Iowa, 20-19. A one-yard plunge by QB Steele Jantz with 40 seconds left on the clock gave the Cyclones the narrow victory, allowing them to slip away from the Panthers upset bid in a game that had 24 penalties and six turnovers.
The oddsmakers out in Las Vegas opened this game with the Hawkeyes as 7-point touchdown favorites on the road, but with just a little action on the game thus far the point spread has only moved down the half-point to Iowa minus -6.5 at most sportsbooks.
What is likely causing bettors to take a casual approach to the Iowa-Iowa State game this weekend is the fact that there are still a lot of unknowns for both of these offenses.
For Iowa it remains to be seen if Vandenberg is the real deal, because playing against Tennessee Tech is like beating the Hawkeyes third string. Despite what will look like respectable rushing numbers versus the Golden Eagles, the Hawkeyes running game did struggle a little and should have been able to run for more than just 148 yards and a 4.5 yard average against an FCS team even on a sloppy field in a rainstorm.
For the Cyclones offense the problems are a little more obvious, they must take care of the football. In their first five possessions of the season last week they had two 3-and-outs, two interceptions and one fumble Ö not the way any offense expects to start. But if not for 16 Northern Iowa penalties (including twice when they were flagged three times on the same play Ö yes, a 35-yard penalty) that led directly to both of their scoring drives, the Cyclones may not have scored at all last week.
Both defenses also have areas that will need to be tweaked in order to get ready for Saturday.
Iowa did allow 140 yards rushing and a 3.1-yard per carry average to Tennessee Tech in the slop Saturday, and the Cyclones run defense was worse against Northern Iowa (204 yards, 4.9 ypc), so whichever team decides to establish the running game will likely have success come Saturday.
The Hawkeyes prevailed in last yearís ďBattle for Iowa,Ē running up a, 35-0, lead midway through the third quarter before taking the foot off the gas pedal in a, 35-7, victory at home in Iowa City. Iowa covered in that game as 12-point favorites and the finishing total of 42 points came in under the closing total at the window of 45.
Iowa has now covered the point spread in two straight head-to-head matchups with the Cyclones, but over the years its actually Iowa State that has cashed for sports bettors covering in five straight (2004 through 2008) and a 10-3 ATS mark going back 13 games in the rivalry.
Add into the mix that Iowa is a notoriously bad road team (1-4 ATS last five), and the fact that the Cyclones are usually good against the Big Ten (11-3 ATS in last 14 games vs. Big 10 Conf. opponent), and you might also have another reason why bettors are leery of this game and itís unpredictability.
The under wager is a strong trend play in this game. The last six games in the head-to-head series have stayed under the total, and the under is also 4-1 in the last five played in Jack Trice Stadium in Ames. The under is 7-1 in the Hawkeyes last eight games vs. a team from the Big 12, plus the under is also a perfect 7-0 in the Cyclones last seven games vs. the Big Ten.
Badgerís Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I know the trends say Iowa State but I just donít think the Cyclones are good enough to keep this game within one score, even if it is a home game. Iím breaking the trend for the better team, Iím taking Iowa minus the -6.5 points.
Friday Week 14 CFB Previews :
Saturday Week 14 CFB Previews:
Editor's Picks - Each weekend our very own in-house All-American Editor makes his NCAA point spread predictions in an attempt to force fumbles, sack and intercept your bookie!
Expert College Football Picks - Free premium college foots plays against the spread from expert handicappers from around the web from week 1 through the National Championship.
Underdog of the Week Pick - We sort through it all and find out which University is getting "too many points" this week. If there was a Heisman Trophy for picking underdogs, we'd be a frontrunner. Expect a 57%+ winning percentage with these picks as we've got a keen ear for loud barking dogs.
Favorite of the Week Pick - Giving points means we start the game down. We're not a real big fan of betting college football favorites as it's similar to trading field goals for touchdowns but stick with us as we buck the odds each week, selecting the favored team with the best chance of covering the spread.
Line Movement - NCAA football lines open early in the week and often times move up or down based on wagering activity, injuries to key players and weather. We decipher whether it's square or wiseguy action and predict the point spread winner based on value.
College Football Consensus Picks - We assess the public perception each week and let them pick the winners for us as we fade their selections which provides us with many trips into our bookies endzone.
Computer Picks - We enter them into the computer and the machine makes it's picks. This is a great guide especially when betting totals! These are available after the first few weeks of the season.
Trends - Despite what you have been told or read on tout sites, the trend ain't your friend. We however turn the tables and fade the almighty trend for what should be some great profits over time.
2014 College Football Predictions - Badger gives his picks to win each major conference. At the end, he gives his prediction on who thinks will win the 2015 National Championship game.
2014 Heisman Trophy Predictions - Jameis Winston is favored to win the award at 3-1 odds but Jay says this is a sucker bet! Marcus Mariota should be a contender and ball carriers TJ Yeldon and Melvin Gordon look good as well!
2015 College Football Championship Predictions - NCAA football handicapper Jay Horne gives his picks on who he thinks will win the 2015 National Championship. Despite not liking to side with heavy favorites, he believes the Alabama Crimson Tide are unstoppable and he has high expectations for them to cash his betting ticket at season's end!
Sportsbook - Get a free $100 bet after making an initial deposit of $100 or more! Great at getting Visa cards to work for deposits.
Bovada - Boasts the highest credit card acceptance rate on the internet! HUGE menu of wagers for you to choose from! One of few online sportsbooks to offer Texas Hold'em! 50% bonus up to $250 in free cash!
5Dimes - 15 team parlays! 20 point teasers! Reduced juice betting odds! Buy up to 15 points! Most props on the web!
GTBets - Offers a HUGE 100% sign up bonus up to $500! Cool offer allows for you to pick 2 of your favorite college football teams and move the line a full point every time you bet those teams!
Heisman Trophy Betting Odds - This article is outdated and will be updated next year for the 2014 college football season.
Odds to Win the 2015 BCS Championship - The Alabama Crimson Tide are favored to be repeat winners of the National Championship this year at +500 followed by Oregon at +800, Ohio St. +850, LSU/Texas A&M +1200 and Florida/FSU both at +1400. Check out your school's odds here!
Heisman Trophy Winners - A full list of college football quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers who have made history on the field and won the prestigious award.
Fantasy College Football - Draft a fresh team every week! Leagues range from $2 to $420! You can play head to head or in big groups! Payouts take place approx. one hour after the final Saturday game.
The Spread - Who will cover the spread? They will! Offers scores, odds, free game predictions, current news and more!