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Kansas Vs. Iowa State: RE-Viewing the Cyclones

Round two against the Cyclones and a lot has changed since the first meeting in Hilton Coliseum.  For the Jayhawks part the play on the court has improved a great deal.  After a sluggish start to begin conference play the Jayhawks have looked a bit like a machine over the last five, especially on the offensive end. 

This one's a home game, no Hilton magic.  Right around the corner sits a Big Monday matchup against in state rival Kansas State.  For Kansas it's important to keep taking it one game at a time and bringing the defense along to a level that matches the impressive offensive tone. 

As for the Cyclones...well?


AP Poll
SOS Projected

Falling On Hard Times

Prior to the season this was an Iowa State team that most expected little from.  Then the season started and Fred Hoiberg managed a fairly solid 13-2 start.  Diante Garrett was and still is a big time player, Scott Christopherson was a machine from beyond the arc and Jamie Vanderbeken might just be the most important player on the team.

Then the Cyclones hit a wall.  More specifically they hit conference play and the lack of depth on the Cyclone bench really started to show.  After dropping the first two including a loss to Kansas, the Cyclones bounced back with a home win against a Baylor team that has some talent. From that point on it's been all losses for Iowa State.

Losses to Oklahoma State, Missouri, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Kansas State and Colorado mean the Cyclones sit 14-10 and 1-8 in the Big 12.  And if we're being honest, that's not the murderers row of the Big 12. At this point the best thing going in Ames might be the fact that Korie Lucious is strongly considering a transfer to Ames.

It's a project for Fred Hoiberg and right now the depth is atrocious.  The sad thing is that there is actually significant talent sitting on the bench in Royce White, he just isn't eligible yet after transferring.  It'll come around.  Ames is a devoted college town.  Last weekend I watched a bad Iowa State team take Kansas State to the brink in front of a pretty full house at Hilton despite a 14-10(1-8) record.  That's commendable at the very least. 

Offensive Averages:

38th / 4th
58th / 3rd
57th / 5th
FG Pct
153rd / 10th

Defensive Averages:

171st / 4th
202nd / 3rd
324th / 5th
FG Pct
39th / 10th


Player Update

Diante Garrett is where it's at for Iowa State.  The point guard was a focus going into the last matchup and headed into this one he should be again.  In conference play Garrett ranks 3rd in the league in scoring and 1st in assists.  The biggest problem for him is that he plays in Ames and the Cyclones are 1-8 in that stretch.  Take his same statistics and put him on a winning team and he's legitimately in the running for Big 12 player of the year.  As it stands to day he's in the conversation as a courtesy.

Beyond Garrett the Cyclones go about four more strong in Scott Christopherson, Jake Anderson, Jamie Vanderbeken and Melvin Ejim.  All still average double figures in scoring.  All still average close to 30 minutes or more on the court per contest.  And all three are fighting tooth and nail every night for Fred Hoiberg.  It's just a matter of going into a war outgunned every day of the week.  It's tough and Cyclone fans are probably ready to turn the page to better times ahead.



Prediction Time

Kansas is on a bit of a run, Iowa State is the worst team in the conference and the Cyclones go SEVEN deep at best.  That's the recipe for a field day for the Jayhawks at home.  Biggest concern is overlooking Iowa State, looking ahead to Kansas State and coming out sluggish or without focus. 

I don't see it happeing, Kansas wins this one big.

Iowa-state ISU 76.3 44.0 73.6 37.1 37.7 10.7 27.0 14.9 12.5 7.1 4.0 16.2
Kansas KU 83.7 52.4 66.5 39.4 38.9 11.3 27.5 18.4 13.5 8.5 4.5 17.7
Iowa-state ISU Opponents 67.9 40.2 68.2 32.5 38.8 12.6 26.2 13.1 15.1 6.3 3.9 17.7
Kansas KU Opponents 64.0 38.8 70.7 28.8 31.5 11.1 20.5 10.8 15.3 6.0 2.8 20.0