Struggling Cyclones travel to TCU
Only two Big 12 squads open conference play today, and they’re both looking to eradicate a slew of early-season mistakes.
TCU tackles Iowa State at 12 p.m. ET in Fort Worth, with oddsmakers leaning heavily toward the home team. Online sports book Bovada.lv lists the Horned Frogs as 25-point favorites several hours before kickoff. The over/under is 62.
Coming off a gut-wrenching defeat to Arkansas, Gary Patterson’s group needs to shore up its defense in a hurry. TCU has allowed an average of 154 yards per game on the ground so far. Moreover, that side of the ball can’t even claim an interception as of yet.
Fortunately, the patented spread offense is anything but a problem. The Horned Frogs are putting up 617 yards and 48.5 points a contest. Quarterback Kenny Hill, in fact, ranks third nationally in total offense among FBS competitors at 477 yards per tilt. That’s bad news for a Cyclones bunch that surrendered 42 points to Iowa last weekend.
In coach Matt Campbell’s first year at the helm in Ames, ISU can’t seem to move the football very much, either. It ranks last among Big 12 participants in yards and scoring. The chief problem: Mike Warren, a 1,000-yard rusher in 2015, has been nearly invisible through eight quarters. With a sum of 58 yards on 19 carries, the sophomore must figure out a way to help Iowa State extend drives this afternoon.
We’re not quite prepared to predict a lockdown performance out of Chad Glasgow’s unit. Nonetheless, TCU seems exceedingly motivated to finally put together a complete outing in Week 3. Don’t expect the Cyclones to generate more than a single score on the road.
SATURDAY NCAA FREE PICK: IOWA STATE/TCU UNDER 62