There’s a battle about to go down in Ames in the January 5th Big 12 CBB free pick. #6 ranked Kansas visits the Hilton Coliseum to play Iowa State. Oddsmakers have actually listed the Cyclones as -1 favorites which gives an idea of their legitimacy vs. a top 10 team in the country. The public likes the Jayhawks here, but does rowdy crowd give ISU the edge?
Can Kansas Adjust to Life on the Road?
Bill Self’s KU team has had another solid start to the season, racking up a 12-1 record. The only blemish was a 76-80 loss at Arizona State on 12/22. The Jayhawks have wins over Michigan State and Tennessee on the year and just finished off a 70-63 win over Oklahoma on Wednesday. Devon Dutson had 16 points in the win and Dedric Lawson added 13.
While Kansas is definitely a very talented team, they have played just 1 true road game this season. These two teams battled to a couple close contests last season with KU winning 83-78 at home (-16 favorites) and 83-77 in Ames (Kansas -6.5 favorites). That brings up an interesting trend for the January 5th Big 12 CBB free pick of the Jayhawks actually being 1-6 ATS the last 7 meetings. 7-0 footer Udoka Azubuike is going to present a big matchup problem vs. Iowa State. The Cyclones are great at avoiding foul trouble however, ranking 7th in the country in opponent FT attempts.
Iowa State Needs To Hit Their Shots – Obviously
The strength of the Cyclones is hitting open shots on the wing as they are 11th in the country in 2-point shooting percentage and have three players that hit over 40% from three point range. One of the biggest questions about Iowa State ahead of the January 5th Big 12 CBB free pick is just how good are they? ISU lost to Arizona and Iowa and has really only two solid wins that came against MIssouri and Oklahoma State.
Iowa State believes they are legit and the team has gone 5-5 SU the last 10 meetings with the Jayhawks. The Cyclones have the Big 12’s leading scorer in Marial Shayok (19.8) and preseason All Big-12 selection Lindell Wigginton is finally working his way back into the lineup after missing the start of the season with an injury. Iowa State is still on their holiday break which may alter the crowd noise a bit but you can bet the Cyclones want this one. The two teams meet up again in 16 days so they are going to get very familiar with each other.
January 5th Big 12 CBB Free Pick Betting
Is Kansas just too good to lose in this matchup? To be fair, Iowa State is pretty solid themselves. The Cyclones are still looking for their signature win of the season and the fact that the Jayhawks have played only one true road game this season definitely gives the Cyclones an edge. It’s going to be a battle but Iowa State being favored even though KU ranks 6th in the country gives you an idea how this contest is going to play out.
Big 12 Free Pick: Iowa State Cyclones -1