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Iowa State Cyclones vs. Northern Iowa Panthers Pick-Odds-Prediction - 12/7/13

Northern Iowa Panthers (3-4) at Iowa State Cyclones (6-0)

College Basketball: Saturday, December 7, 2013 at 6:00 pm (Wells Fargo Arena)

The Line: Iowa State Cyclones -9.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN3.com

The Iowa State Cyclones put their perfect recordon the line when Northern Iowa visits on Saturday.

I guess the first thing we have to realize is the Northern Iowa that made some noise in the Big Dance a few years back is not the same as th 2013-14 version. What that means to me is not to expect consistent performances from both the offense and defense and they need both to be successful. Neither was consistent in an 83-72 loss to Milwaukee as a seven point lead at the break went by the wayside with a dominant offensive spurt by the home team over the final 20 minutes carrying the day. Milwaukee won the shooting battle 45%-40.6% and won it by netting five more threes. Deon Mitchell was high scorer for Northern Iowa with 19 points followed by Wes Washpun tossed in 16 points and snared five boards while Chip Rank added 13.

Iowa State Cyclones vs. Northern Iowa Panthers Pick-Odds-Prediction - 12/7/13

Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sport

Iowa State has reached #18 in the polls thanks to their 6-0 start that includes victories over Michigan and Brigham Young on the road. Both ends of the floor can be tough to deal with their up tempo style of play clicking. Auburn saw the Cyclones at their best in a 99-70 decision as the offense connected at 45% and held the Tigers to a mere 35%. A 13-6 edge from distance and eleven more looks at the basket carried the day with a 19 point lead heading in to the locker room growing larger in the second stanza. Dustin Hogue was a man among boys with 22 points and 16 rebounds with Melvin Ejim and Matt Thomas adding 14 points with Ejim snagging ten boards. Monte Morris added 12 points and handed out nine assists while Naz Long contributed eleven points.

If this were the Northern Iowa squad of a few years back I might take a shot with them but Iowa State has played like it's been life or death so I'm inclined to back them and see if it continues...

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