Michigan State vs #7 Iowa

Michigan State vs #7 Iowa | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on February 1, 2021

Could powerhouse Michigan State actually miss the NCAA Tournament? Very possibly if Tom Izzo’s unranked club doesn’t start winning soon. The Spartans will be sizable NCAAB betting underdogs on Tuesday at Top-10 team Iowa, though.

How to Bet Michigan State at Iowa NCAA Basketball Odds & TV Info

  • When: Tuesday, 6 PM ET
  • Where: Carver-Hawkeye Arena
  • TV: Fox Sports 1
  • Stream: Fox Sports Go
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAB Lines: TBA (Iowa will be favored)

Last Meeting

The schools played once last season and MSU won 78-70 at home when it was ranked 24th and Iowa 18th. Cassius Winston (now in NBA) scored 19 of his 20 points in the second half as Sparty rallied. With Michigan State’s top two scorers not producing, Iowa controlled the first half and was up 33-27 after 20 minutes. Hawkeyes superstar Luka Garza scored 20 on 8 of 21 shooting against a lot of attention. The Hawkeyes were without one injured starter in CJ Fredrick.

Why Bet on Michigan State? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Spartans will travel to Iowa to make up the game originally scheduled for Jan. 14 that was postponed due to COVID issues at Michigan State. To play this game, though, MSU home game with Nebraska was been pushed back three days until Feb. 6. It means the Spartans need three more postponed league games rescheduled — home vs. Indiana and Illinois, and on the road at Michigan that originally was scheduled for Feb. 6.

MSU (8-6) is in a bad way right now, losing three straight and the offense has disappeared. Tom Izzo’s team was routed again Sunday 79-62 at No. 13 Ohio State. The Spartans had 20 days off because of COVID-19 issues and then lost to Rutgers by 30 points last Thursday night. The shooting went cold again in the second half on Sunday. They shot a dismal 32.1% as a team after managing just 28.6% against Rutgers.

“We took a small step forward in some ways but the shooting woes continue,” Izzo said. “When you don’t make shots, it’s hard to go down to the other end and defend.”

Joshua Langford scored 14 points to lead the Spartans, while forward Joey Hauser added 11 points and five rebounds (he was in question with an injury), and forward Aaron Henry had 10 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Henry has been selected as one of the Top 10 candidates for the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award. Henry is one of only three players in Division I averaging at least 13.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 blocks per game.

Rocket Watts, who started at point guard over A.J. Hoggard, struggled again. The sophomore made 2 of 9 shots for six points with two assists and two turnovers in 26 minutes.

“I don’t know. I don’t know. I’m going to keep rotating until I find the right rotation,” Izzo said. “It wasn’t very good (with Watts).”

The Spartans had 14 of their 15 players back at OSU, minus junior Gabe Brown, who tested positive for the virus late last week. Assistant coach Dane Fife also missed his second game after a positive COVID-19 test.

Why Bet on Iowa? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Iowa (12-4) was knocked off at then-No. 19 Illinois on Friday, 80-75. The schools traded leads for most of the game. It featured eight ties and a whopping 22 lead changes, but the Illini scored nine of the final 12 points to snap the Hawkeyes’ three-game Big Ten road winning streak.

Illinois finally took command in the final two minutes but was up by only three points when Iowa’s Jordan Bohannon missed a hurried 3 pointer with 11 seconds left. The Illini’s Kofi Cockburn was immediately fouled and missed his free throw but grabbed the rebound. Cockburn was fouled again with 2 seconds left and sank both shots to seal the win.

Illinois had a higher field goal (50 to 43.1) and 3-point field goal (42.1 to 40) percentage and they made 11 more free throws (14 to 3) in the game. The Illini out-rebounded Iowa, 39-33.

All-American Luka Garza and Joe Wieskamp paced the Hawkeyes with 19 points. Connor McCaffery finished with a season-high 11 points and five assists, while Keegan Murray scored eight points and had a team-high eight rebounds in his first career start.

It’s the first time this season that Iowa has lost back-to-back games. It also fell 81-69 at home to Indiana on Jan. 21 and then had a game Jan. 24 vs. Nebraska postponed. Garza ranks first in the country in points per game (26.9 ppg) and eighth in double-doubles (7). The Hawkeyes have posted 19 runs of 10-0 or better this season, which includes a 20-0 run in Iowa’s at Maryland on Jan. 7

Expert Prediction

  • Iowa 84, Michigan State 74

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