Iowa State Cyclones (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS) vs. Iowa Hawkeyes (1-0 SU, 0-1 ATS)
College Football Week 2
Date/Time: Saturday, September 10, 2016 – 7:30 PM EDT
Where: KINNICK STADIUM
TV: BIG TEN NETWORK
by KEITH, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: ISU +15/IOWA -15
Over/Under Total: 51
The Battle of the Cy-Hawk Trophy is one of college football’s most storied rivalries. A state divided filled with pernicious acrimony that separates households is the best way to describe this dairy state donnybrook. Ames versus Iowa City, Cyclones against Hawkeyes, Cardinal and Maize versus Black and Yellow, Big Ten against Big 12, the titles go on and on. This year’s chapter will take place at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa, a place notorious for crushing the spirits of visiting teams, where hopes and aspirations die on the field of the Hawkeyes. A venue known for locker rooms painted with pink walls, designed to intentionally disarm and frighten opponents in waiting. The venue where the Iowa State Cyclones will meet their hated rival, the Iowa Hawkeyes in a showdown for state bragging rights. The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network with a scheduled kick-off of 7:30 PM.
The Cyclones come in off a bitter loss after they were taken down at home by the #5 team in the FCS, Northern Iowa 25-20 in Ames, last Saturday. The Cyclones were spotting over seven points as a favorite but nonetheless failed to deliver. Northern Iowa despite being a FCS team is one of the country in their respective subdivision. The Panthers were eliminated from last year’s playoff when they fell to a team with a reputation that precedes them. An outfit that has authored one of the most impressive and dominant reigns in college football history, North Dakota State. Northern Iowa could dispatch many FBS teams and it is safe to assume they could have their way with the opening weekend opponent for Iowa, Miami Ohio. With this being said, Iowa tackled the challenge with ease as they erased the Redhawks 45-21 in their Week One outing. Nevertheless, the result raises some questions for a team that has established a reputation for a vaunted defense. The Hawkeyes managed to surrender three touchdowns to a mediocre opponent from the MAC that won just three games last year. Furthermore, Kirk Ferentz’s bunch has harassed some of the Big Ten’s best offenses, yet the Hawkeyes could not cover their lofty spread. Perhaps the Hawkeyes were guilty of looking forward to the match-up with their cross-state enemies.
Iowa State will not come in to Kinnick Stadium with any form of trepidation. The Cyclones know they can win in Iowa City, as they have won the last two battles that have ensued there. The narrative of Iowa’s recent toils at home against the Cyclones is one worth recognizing and never should be taken lightly. The Hawkeyes and their vulnerability for heartbreaks when they are heavily favored is another stat worth taking in to consideration. When giving away points like candy, most notably double-digit point margins in these affairs over the last decade, the Hawkeyes have been problematic. In fact, the Hawkeyes are 1-3 ATS when they are favored by more than ten points. In two of the mentioned losses, the Hawkeyes lost straight-up. In both instances, the Hawkeyes have lost as a 13.5 and 17.5 point favorite on two separate occasions. Therefore, it is safe to conclude that this outfit is never safe from being up-ended by their cross-state antagonists.
The stock in Iowa State is never lower and Iowa given their run for the Big Ten last year is considered a hot commodity. It is in these situations that trouble often comes forth. Coming in off what is considered a poor defeat against Northern Iowa, the situation sets the Cyclones up perfectly to play the role of homewrecker. The Cyclones are looking for redemption and they are the exception to the rule when it comes to the rigors of Kinnick Stadium. These boys are not afraid and likely boast a competitive edge because they are aware they own Kinnick Stadium as of late.
Given the points available here with Iowa State, there is no reason not to play on them. In rivalry games, the underdog is usually a great play unless there is a clear cut disadvantage for the pooch. However, psychologically the Cyclones are the ones in the driver seat. Tossing in two touchdowns to work with, makes Iowa State a must play.
KEITH’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: IOWA STATE +15
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