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Basketball Preview: We’re Talkin’ the Cowboys

The Clones are at home for a must win against the lone team left without a conference win

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 02 Iowa State at Oklahoma State Photo by William Purnell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Oklahoma State comes into this Tuesday match up with an 0-5 conference record and an overall record of 9-8. The Cowboys are rolling off a game with Baylor over the weekend in which Baylor rallied for a win to hang on and deliver Okie State their fifth straight loss.

On the other side of the ball tonight — Iowa State is in the eye of the storm that is the most brutal part of their schedule this season. Coming off big losses at Baylor and at Texas Tech, tonight could be the win the Clones need to get Steve Prohm and company back on track.

Last Time Out

Let us sit down and have an honest conversation about that Tech game — it did not go well. Despite holding the Red Raiders to under 30 points in the first half, it surely will not help the situation when the Cyclones only managed to put up 21 themselves. So even despite the rock fight that was the first half and the game being close, the signs were there.

What’s there to say about the second half that probably has not been covered already? 3-22 from the arc mixed with an overall shooting percent of 35% from the field up against an offense that shot over 50% from the field and 40% from three, does not make for success.

Tyrese Haliburton would lead all Iowa State scorers with 13 points on 5/12 shooting. He would also lead the team in assists with 2. Yes, that is correct, the highest assist total for the game was two. Yikes. Also of note — freshman Tre Jackson led the team in rebounds with 4. Double, no wait, quadruple yikes.

On the other side of the ball, Texas Tech was able to find a groove offensively shortly out of the half and never looked back. The Taco Boys were led by Kyler Edwards 22 points (who on the season was averaging 12, so no shock there), and also his 4 rebounds.

Despite the 16 turnovers by Texas Tech, they still managed to keep the route going all through the second half to post a a 20 point victory. Iowa State still could not hit shots in the second nor find any real production that eventually was the nail in the proverbial coffin for this team and arguably this season.

About Oklahoma State

Last year OSU was on a bit of a down tick that seems to be plaguing third year coach Mike Boynton again this season. In 2019 the Cowboys finished with 12 overall wins and only 5 in the conference. They tapped out at 9th in the conference finishing only ahead of West Virginia.

Despite starting the season on a hot streak and coming out 7-0 to begin the year. Okie State then hit a skid by losing 3 of their next 5 and 8 of the next 10.

This season does not seem to be faring much better for the boys from Stillwater, as their biggest signs of life in the last eight weeks came a week ago against Baylor, which still resulted in a loss.

The Cowboys currently rank 80th overall according to KenPom with an adjusted offense of 101 (174th) and adjusted defense of 91 (30th).

Player to Watch

Lindy Waters III will more than likely be the bucket-getter tonight for OSU but look out for Isaac Likekele who is not far behind Waters in regards to points per game as they are one and two (11.9 and 11.5) respectively. Iowa State’s guards will have their hands full keeping these two locked up.

Cameron McGriff could also cause potential problems for the front court as McGriff currently averages 10 points and 6 boards across his 17 games played this season. The 6’7 forward could very well be problematic for Mike Jacobson tonight so look for a lot of help defense to ensure McGriff does not get going early.

What Will Happen

Look, to be honest, this is a must win game. Iowa State needs this win right now to keep any semblance of stability afloat. With the current skid that Prohm has hit over the last two games and the restlessness of the fan base, expect tonight to have some tension to it.

If Iowa State can come out early and get the confidence up with a few early threes and quick stops, this game should be over fairly early. Prohm needs to look over the Oklahoma game one more time before tonight as a reminder of what this offense can look like.

Utilize Conditt in the paint early to open up corner looks, and let Tyrese attack the rim early, and the Cyclones should find themselves in a very advantageous situation tonight for the entire game.

Cyclones- 78

Oklahoma State - 64

Pick 3

  1. Conditt has a double double tonight and notches his first 20 point game.
  2. Tyrese sniffs another triple double but is stalled out on rebounds.
  3. Prohm gets a little more love and backing from the fan base as a reminder this team could still be good when things click.

Game Notes

The Matchup: Iowa State (8-9, 1-4 Big 12) vs. Oklahoma State (9-8, 0-5 Big 12)

Where: Hilton Coliseum - Ames, Iowa (14,384)

When: Tuesday, January 21, 2020; Tip 7:00pm

Radio: Cyclone Radio Network/TuneIn Radio Talent: John Walters (PxP), Eric Heft (Analyst)

TV: ESPN+

Betting Lines: Iowa State -6.5

Live Stats: Cyclonestats.com