West Virginia Mountaineers at #23 Iowa State Cyclones Betting Preview
The Big 12 Conference begins the final week of the regular season on Monday night with the #23 Iowa State Cyclones (17-11, 8-8 Big 12) hosting the West Virginia Mountaineers (16-13, 5-11 Big 12). West Virginia hosted Iowa State earlier this month, holding on to a 76-71 advantage in Morgantown. The two teams have played 22 times in the school’s history, with the Mountaineers holding a 13-9 advantage.
Monday’s action tips off at 9 p.m. EST inside James H. Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State is a four-point favorite, and the over/under total is 134 points.
What to Know – West Virginia Mountaineers
West Virginia enters a critical week having lost three of its last four contests and slipping in the NCAA Tournament projections. Most poles still have the Mountaineers in the tournament, but closing out the regular season with two more losses will put pressure on WVU during the Big 12 Conference Tournament. The Mountaineers have slipped to ninth in the ten-team conference standings.
The Mountaineers are third in the conference in scoring, pouring in 76.5 points per game thanks to 45.4% shooting from the floor and 35.5% from beyond the arc. West Virginia’s defense is last in the Big 12, surrendering 70.8 ppg, 44.7% shooting from the field and 33.8% from the 3-point line.
WVU is 14-15 against the spread this year and 4-6 ATS on the road. The Mountaineers 2-4 ATS over their recent six contests.
What to Know – #23 Iowa State Cyclones
The Cyclones are slipping at the wrong time as well, dropping five of their last six and nearly falling out of the top 25. Iowa State has more marquee victories than WVU and should be squarely in the mix for a respectable seed come tournament time, but closing out the regular season on a high note is important. The Cyclones are tied with TCU for fifth in the Big 12.
On offense, Iowa State is ninth in the league surrendering 68.3 ppg while shooting 45.4% from the field and 33.3% from deep. Defensively, the Cyclones lead the conference holding opponents to 62.0 ppg, 41.9% shooting from the floor and 33.1% from three.
Iowa State owns a 13-14 mark ATS with a 9-6 record ATS on its home floor. In the last six outings, the Cyclones are 1-5 ATS.
The Pick is In
Both teams are looking for a win here to build some momentum heading into tournament play after a lackluster month of action from both sidelines. The Mountaineers can sweep the season series with a victory, but will need to play at the top of their game in a tough environment to do so.
Look for Iowa State’s defense to be the difference in this one. The Mountaineers are coming off a hard-fought loss at Kansas and will be tested earlier. The Cyclones defense steps up while the offense does what it needs to do to get Iowa State back in the win column.
The Pick: #23 Iowa State Cyclones -4