Iowa State vs UConn in Sweet Sixteen
The Iowa State Cyclones and UConn Huskies meet tonight in the Sweet Sixteen. All of you who had this match up congratulations. You are either a college basketball expert or extremely lucky. The Huskies pulled off a surprise when they knocked out the #2 seeded Villanova Wildcats. Not only did they beat their former Big East rivals, but they did it rather easily 77-65. As usual, Shabazz Napier was the best player on the floor. He had 25 points against the Wildcats following his 24 in an overtime win over the St. Joseph’s Hawks in the second round.
The Huskies have a shot to get to the Final Four with a win tonight. If they do they will most likely face the #1 overall seed Florida Gators in the national semifinals. They are one of two teams to beat the Gators this season. Napier won that game with a buzzer beater to win by one point.
The Cyclones were thought to be in trouble against the North Carolina Tar Heels after losing one of their best big men, Georges Niang to a broken foot in their second round win over North Carolina Central. But even without their star, the Cyclones won a cliff hanger over the Heels 85-83. DeAndre Kane won the game on a driving layup with less than two seconds on the clock to put the Heels out of the Big Dance.
So the big question in tonight’s game is “can the Cyclones win another one without the services of Niang?” Many times a team can overcome a loss of a key player for one game. But eventually the reason he was in the lineup will be revealed.
Both teams played in tough conferences this past season. The Huskies were part of the AAC which sent four teams to the tournament. The champion Louisville Cardinals are also playing tonight in the Sweet Sixteen. The Cyclones are part of the Big 12 which had the Baylor Bears already in the Sweet Sixteen. They sent the Kansas Jayhawks, Kansas State Wildcats, Oklahoma State Cowboys and Oklahoma Sooners to the Big Dance while the AAC had the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Memphis Tigers also in the tournament.
Sports Betting has the odds on tonight’s big game:
Iowa State vs Connecticut– UConn is +1 -110 and ISU is -1 -110 ATS. Moneyline has the Huskies -105 and the Cyclones -115. Oddly enough the odds makers have this match-up as the closest of the four Sweet Sixteen games tonight and the much hyped Kentucky vs Louisville games as the most lopsided. The UConn vs Iowa State game is getting the lest attention of the four.
We are picking UConn +1 -110 and also UConn -105. The difference in this one will be that one team has Napier and the other does not.