Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: David Montgomery
Iowa State 2018 Betting Odds
- To win the National Title: +60000
- To win the Big 12: +2700
- To make Playoff: Yes +8000, No -26000
- Reach Big 12 Championship: +800
- Win Total: 6.5 (over -110, under -110)
All lines taken from 5Dimes on July 30. Always shop for the best line.
Iowa State 2018 Schedule, Betting Odds
The Action Network Projected Wins: 7.2
Bet To Watch
Iowa State Over 6.5 Wins (-110)
Iowa State coach Matt Campbell’s stock continues to climb, although this year, his Cyclones will not sneak up on anybody. Iowa State pulled off stunning wins over Oklahoma and TCU in 2017, but the Cyclones ultimately tripped up in their quest to make the Big 12 championship game thanks to close losses to Oklahoma State and Kansas State.
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Iowa State is set under center after Kyle Kempt was granted a sixth season of eligibility. The offensive line — which returns roughly half of its production — must improve its adjusted line yards, opportunity rate and stuff rate (all of which ranked outside the top 100 last season). Any improvement from the offensive line will be big, as running back David Montgomery is an exciting talent. He was running for his life in the backfield a season ago.
The 3-4 defense excelled last year, improving from 95th to 32nd according to S&P+. The bulk of that defense returns, and the Cyclones will play five home conference games this season. Oklahoma visits Ames looking for revenge, but it will ultimately be road games against TCU, Oklahoma State and Texas that will decide if the Cyclones get to the Big 12 championship.
With plenty of returning experience, a coach on the rise and a friendlier schedule, there is value on backing Iowa State to win over 6.5 games.
What else you need to know about Iowa State
Would I ever suggest betting on the Akron Zips when they travel on the road? No, but if you are a fan of situational spots, this may be your cup of tea.
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Iowa State hosts Oklahoma on Sept. 15, then is home against Akron the following Saturday before traveling to TCU on Sept. 29. Akron will have plenty of issues this season, but this is a spot to back Kato Nelson and the Zips.