Iowa State Cyclones (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS) vs. No. 9 Iowa Hawkeyes (1-0
SU, 0-1 ATS), Week 2 NCAA Football, 3:30 p.m. EST, Saturday,
September 11, 2010, Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, Iowa, TV: ABC
by Badger of Predictem.com
Point Spread: ISU +13.5/University of Iowa -13.5
The yearly battle for bragging rights in the state of Iowa kicks off
Saturday at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City when the 9th-ranked Iowa
Hawkeyes play host to the rival Iowa State Cyclones on ABC.
Both teams enter the game with an unblemished record in 2010, as both
teams were winners in the season opener last weekend.
The Hawkeyes had all facets of their game working in their 37-7
victory over Eastern Illinois last week, despite the slim 30-point
victory. The Hawkeyes special teams blocked a punt for a score, the
defense recorded a safety and the offense steamrolled the Panthers
with running back Adam Robinson as the main beneficiary since he
finished with 109 yards and three touchdowns.
The Cyclones surprised a lot of bettors last week (including a few of
our members in our betting forum here on Predictem) by easily
handling Northern Illinois in their home debut, 27-10. Iowa State
finished with almost as many first downs (25) as points on offense,
and the defense played excellent against the pass allowing just 93
yards (3.2 per catch) while registering three interceptions in the
But both teams will have to turn it up a notch this week for a
rivalry game, a rivalry that is an even 5-5 straight up over the past
The people that set the betting odds in Las Vegas opened the game
with the Hawkeyes as nearly two touchdown chalks, listing them as
13.5-point favorites. While most of the offshore sportsbooks are
still listing the point spread at 13.5, there are a few books that
have moved it up the hook to a full 14-point spread.
The over/under total is still not listed at a majority of
sportsbooks, but the few that have put a total on their boards are
opening it at 45 or 44.5 at the moment. The best line and odds for this game can be found at 5Dimes, where you can bet on college football games at -105 odds.
On offense these two schools have contrasting styles that seem to be
Iowa runs a classic pro-style of scheme with a lot of I-formation and 5- and 7-step dropback passing plays off of play action. Quarterback
Richard Stanzi was solid in the opener, throwing for 229 yards and a
score on 18-of-23 passing. Robinson, who was the main cog on running
plays behind a remade Iowa offensive line last week, will need to
continue to take pressure off of Stanzi because the secondary is the
strength of the Cyclones defense.
Iowa State runs an option-oriented offense that features the duel
threat of quarterback Austen Arnaud, who ran for 45 yards and a
touchdown and added 265 yards passing in the opener. But Arnaud is
not as polished of a passer, like most duel-threat QBs, as he threw
two interceptions last week to account for two of their three
turnovers in the game. Alexander Robinson is the Cyclones biggest
threat out of the backfield, running for 97 yards and two scores in
Look for Iowa to try and pound away on the Cyclones defense, because as I mentioned above the secondary is the Cyclones strength on
defense. Their run defense, which was gouged by Northern Illinois
last week for 156 yards and a 4.3 yards per carry average, is a weak
link and will need to get better quickly if they hope to pull off the
Iowas defense, which wasnt really tested much last week, is the
Hawkeyes biggest asset. They gave up 157 total yards against Eastern
Illinois last week, with very strong averages (2.7 yards per rush;
4.6 yards per catch) too, but they will be facing a tougher test in
the Cyclones and their option attack. If the Hawkeyes stay in their
gaps and stuff the Cyclones running game it should be a long day for
Iowa State coach Paul Rhodes, because the Cyclones passing game feeds
off of defenses over committing to stop the run.
Most of the betting trends for this game favor the Cyclones, even
though the straight-up numbers are even since 2000.
Iowa State is an ATM-cash machine like 10-2 ATS in the last 12
meetings in the head-to-head series and a perfect 6-0 ATS in Kinnick
in their last six visits. Last year when the Hawkeyes won 35-3 in
Ames, covering as 6.5-point favorites, it snapped the Cyclones string
of five consecutive covers. Last time the game was in Iowa City (in
2008) the Cyclones covered as 13-point underdogs, as well as 14-point
dogs in 2006 at Kinnick.
What also helps the Cyclones is the fact that the road team is a solid 6-2 ATS in the last eight meetings too.
The under wager is also a solid bet in the series, with it cashing in
five straight meetings between the two and its also 6-0 in the
Cyclones last six games versus a team from the Big Ten Conference.
The under is also 13-2-1 in Iowas last 16 non-conference games overall.
Badgers Pick to Cover the Spread: I expect the Cyclones to play the Hawkeyes tough,
just like they always do, but Im just not so sure their defense will
be able to stop the Hawkeyes running game. Iowa State has a good
secondary, but it wont matter if the Hawkeyes are getting five yards
a crack on the ground. Im looking at a late backdoor cover here
because I expect the Cyclones to have a real hard time scoring on
Iowas strong defense. Buck the trend and take Iowa minus the 13.5