Iowa State, a team that has started Charlie Sheen -ing it here down the stretch (WINNING!), faces a team that has been WINNING the last couple of weeks in K-State. The last time these two teams faced, it was a game that Iowa State really should have won, but late game execution and clutch-ness of Jacob Pullen said otherwise, as K-State won 86-85. K-State was nearly circling the drain relative to their preseason expectations, and their win over us helped keep their season alive. As an Iowa State fan, this is a game that I would like to see go similarly to before, but am afraid it could go quite differently.
Last Time Out:
Both teams shot really well, especially from beyond the arc. Iowa State's eFG was 63%, while K-State's was 61.5%. The main difference in the game, was K-State made 14 three pointers (vs. 7 for Iowa State), and rebounded the ball well on the offensive glass (12 offensive boards vs. 4 offensive boards for Iowa State). The teams played similarly, the K-State did just enough at the end to squeak out the victory.
Why It Might Be Different (In A Bad Way For Iowa State):
Obvious answer is because it is a road game. This team does not play the same on the road as at home. They haven't won a road Big 12 game, and winning at Kansas State will not be an easy task, as their fans as of recently have made it a difficult place to play. Also, Kansas State has improved a lot. They are on a 5 game winning streak that includes wins over Kansas, Texas, and Mizzou.
Why It Might Be The Same (In A Good Way For Iowa State):
While it isn't a huge winning streak we are on, the team will be playing with more confidence than before. Ejim and Godfrey have been stepping it up on the boards, and Godfrey showed last time out, he can eat a team up inside if they do not account for him. I think Iowa State can outshoot them from beyond the arc. Jamie Vanderbeken and Scott Christopherson are continuing to shoot the three-ball well. It is doubtful in my mind that K-State will make 14 threes again. They made 5 threes against Texas, 7 against Mizzou, 4 against Nebraska, 10 against Oklahoma, and 6 against Kansas. Last time, Kansas State had a 21 point advantage from beyond the arc on Iowa State. If the teams draw even from out there, or Iowa State exceeds them, they have a shot.
Lastly, DG and Scott have experience winning in Manhattan. Iowa State with 3 conference wins faced a K-State team ranked #5 in the nation, and shocked them in OT. If you remember, Brackins fouled out of the game, and DG carried the Cyclones to victory in OT. Even though it is a hard place to play now, there are a couple of guys who have done it before there.
I think Kansas State gets the win. They are at home, and they haven't looked past anybody like their team last year was prone to. They've beat KU and Texas, but have also taken care of Oklahoma. We are playing better, but they are playing better too. If we shoot well, we lose by 6-7 points. If we go really cold, then it will be more like 15-20 points. I think we keep it close. K-State just has more talent.
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