Iowa State Cyclones vs. Oakland Grizzlies - 11/14/14 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Oakland Grizzlies (13-20) at Iowa State Cyclones (28-8)
College Basketball: Friday, November 14, 2014 at 8:00 pm (Hilton Coliseum)
The Line: Iowa State Cyclones -18.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Iowa State Cyclones open up their seasons this Friday night at the Hilton Coliseum.
The Iowa State Cyclones open the season ranked 14th in country and will start the season with high expectations of not only trying to dethrone Kansas as the leader of the Big 12, but also make it deep into the NCCA tournament in March. Over the off-season, Iowa State’s head coach Fred Hoiberg was highly sought after by many NBA franchises, however Hoiberg decided to return to Ames confident that he has the pieces to lead Iowa State past the Sweet Sixteen where they were eliminated last year by eventual champions, the Connecticut Huskies. Although Iowa State lost two All-American players in Melvin Ejim and DeAndre Kane, they return a Player of the Year candidate in Georges Niang, along with Dustin Hogue and Monte Morris. Georges Niang (16.7 pts, 4.5 reb, and 3.6 ast last year) is one of the toughest match-ups in the county and will be highly motivated to lead his team back to the NCAA tournament after missing the majority of the NCAA tournament due to a foot injury last year. Dustin Hodge (11.6 pts, 8.4 reb) will look to continue the strong play he demonstrated in tournament last year with his 34 point outburst in Iowa’s state loss to Connecticut. Fred Hoiberg will also have a new weapon in UNLV transfer, Bryce Dejean-Jones (13.6 pts, 3.7 reb, 3.0 ast) who should be a great complement in the backcourt with Monte Morris.
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The Oakland Golden Grizzlies are currently projected to be in the middle of the pack in the Horizon League as head coach, Greg Kampe, looks to replace the NCAA all-time three-point scoring leader in Travis Bader and point-guard Duke Mondy. The Oakland Golden Grizzlies hope that reigning Horizon League Freshman of the Year, Kahlil Felder (9.5 pts, 3.9 reb, 6.4 ast) and Senior Forward Corey Petros (13.3 pts, 8.2 reb) will help pick up some of the offensive that will be sorely missed with Bader and Mondy gone. Kampe also hopes that transfer, Max Hooper, who saw limited time last year at St. John’s, will have an instant impact on the offensive end for this squad. Even if Greg Kampe can find the replacement pieces from last year’s departures, for Oakland to have any success this year, they will need to improve on the defensive side of the ball as the Golden Grizzlies ranked 329th in country giving up 77.4 points a game and 305th on the defensive glass.
The Cyclones are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 home games and 11-4 ATS in their past 15 non-conference games. The Golden Grizzlies are 3-10-1 ATS in their last 14 games and 5-11 ATS their last 16 non-conference games.
Oakland will be traveling to a very rowdy Hilton Coliseum with many questions on both the offensive and defensive ends. Although 20 points is a lot of give on an opening night, between the coaching of Fred Holberg and talent of Niang and Hogue, I think the Cyclones will treat their home crowd to a dominate win.