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- Iowa State Cyclones vs. Baylor Bears Predictions
Iowa State Cyclones vs. Baylor Bears Predictions
Pickswise's Expert Predictions & Analysis
Point Spread Prediction
Baylor will look to continue their flawless season when they take on lowly Iowa State on Tuesday night. Though from a betting perspective, it is very hard to trust Baylor to cover this monster spread. It is true that the Bears dominate in almost every aspect of the game, but at this point in the season, they may have reason to take their foot off the gas if the game becomes a blowout. There is also the fact that they have West Virginia on deck, so their attention might be elsewhere. Before rushing off to bet Baylor, you need to consider the rate at which Iowa State defends the three-point line. They allow their conference opponents to shoot just 31.6 percent from downtown. Knowing that Baylor is the best three-point shooting team in the conference and the fact that 37.1 percent of their points come from behind the arc could end up being a problem for the Bears. They are sure to knock down their fair share of three-pointers, but may have to rely on their inside presence more often than not.
As an example, the Bears shot 4 of 21 from downtown in their first meeting with the Cyclones. Baylor won this game by only 11 points on the road, meaning Iowa State was able to cover. I do not see Baylor shooting this poorly from deep range again, but I do believe this is much too big of a spread, especially with the aforementioned West Virginia game on deck. Because of that, I am going to back the Cyclones to keep this one within range and will back them to cover as a lean.
Game Totals Prediction
This total looks to be a bit too high given how good of a defense Baylor has this season. The Bears rank sixth in defensive efficiency in the country and first in the Big 12. They also have the fourth best effective field goal defense in the Big 12. Further, they rank third in three-point defense, and sixth in two-point defense. Iowa State has an inefficient offense to say the least, so more than likely they will not be able to pull their own weight. The Cyclones do play at the second fastest pace in the Big 12, but their shooting numbers would indicate they are not going to light up the scoreboard on this defense.
Another factor that we believe will help the under is the lack of free throw shooting from the Cyclones. They get to the line the least often in the conference, meaning the clock will stop less and therefore, there will be less points scored. The first meeting saw the Cyclones struggle to reach the 65-point mark, so around there (or less) is what we expect from them this time around too. As for Baylor, their offense can score plenty, but also, they have much more important games ahead, so it is more likely they let up near the end of the game. Because Baylor’s offense has been very efficient, this would still only be a lean to the under.