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Men’s Basketball Preview: We’re Talkin’ KU pt. 2

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Goaltending be DAMNED

Syndication: Columbia Daily Tribune Nirmalendu Majumdar/Ames Tribune / USA TODAY NETWORK

Cyclones’ Last Time Out

Iowa State is coming off two much needed victories. An OT thriller in Stillwater, and a blowout against old Big 12 foe Mizzou put the Cyclones back on track. The first half was a little sloppy, but a 15-0 run early in the second half put the Tigers out of reach for the rest of the game.

Like many a game this year, Brockington and Hunter led the way in scoring and were the best performances of the day. Even more telling, Iowa State only shot 6-18 from three and still put Mizzou away pretty handedly. To be fair, the Tigers best ‘win’ of the season was almost beating Auburn, but Iowa State had to take care of business, and that’s what they did.

Kansas’ Last Time Out

Yikers. Kentucky kind of whooped that ass at Phog Allen. The Wildcats were up by 20 at halftime, Keion Brooks had the game of his career, and Kansas was never in this one. Besides the rebound margin there isn’t a clear sign of why this one was such a train wreck.

Iowa State lacks both the talent of Kentucky, but hopefully Otz found some secret sauce that Calipari was cookin’ with to throw a wrench in the Jayhawks’ plan.

Player to Watch

I’ll give you one not to watch; Ochai Agbaji. Reported out due to Covid, literally as I’m typing this. So that narrows it down. I’ll go with Christian Braun instead. Braun is quietly averaging almost 16 points for this Jayhawk team along with 6 boards and 3.5 assists. Usually, when a guy looks like that on a really good team, it’s because he sits on the perimeter and knocks down open 3’s, but Braun does a lot more.

He can drive, he can kick, he can handle. He’s tasked with some of the harder defensive assignments on the other end. Ol’ Billy Self is going to need some extra production out of Braun tonight with Agbaji being out.

Pick 3

  1. Brockington double double
  2. Iowa State shoots under 35% from 3
  3. Fran Fraschilla brings up Wallaby’s during the broadcast

What Will Happen

There are two schools of thoughts here.

One, Kansas just got mollywhopped on a huge stage and they’re going to come out with some piss and vinegar. They want to bounce back from a bad loss in a big way and are going to come out firing on all cylinders. Kansas’ talent and athleticism are too much for us, we get in foul trouble, can’t make a shot, and Kansas runs away with it.

OR

My much-preferred option of Kansas is broken. Something ain’t right, in between those locker room walls, and the Cyclones are going to exploit a team without their best player and senior leader. Hilton is going to be downright obnoxious. Otz has brought this whole thing up from six feet under, and this is the pay off. We were 2-22 last year. Now we’re feeling confident about our chances against a top 10 Kansas team that got swapped to be put on ESPN prime time. We back.

Iowa State- 74

Kansas- 70