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12/11 Big Ten Preview: Iowa Hosts Iowa State

Preview all of Friday’s Big Ten action.

NCAA Basketball: Iowa at Iowa State Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten only has two games on Friday, but both look really intriguing. Nebraska travels to face Creighton in the early game and Iowa will host arch-rival Iowa State in the later game. Both offer the Big Ten opportunities for marquee wins.

Let’s take a look at the schedule.

Game of the Day:

-Iowa State Cyclones at No. 3 Iowa Hawkeyes

  • Time/TV: 9:00PM ET (BTN)
  • KenPom Spread: Iowa by 11

After score a double-digit win over North Carolina on Tuesday, Hawkeye fans are feeling pretty good about where the team is sitting. Iowa is top five in the polls, top 10 on KenPom, and seems destined for some big things in March if it keeps taking care of business. And Friday offers a nice opportunity to keep things rolling in the right direction.

Iowa State enters the game at 1-1 and ranked 72nd on KenPom, so it’s clear why the Hawkeyes are favored before tip. However, don’t overlook the Cyclones. The team has a talented backcourt featuring Rasir Bolton (former Penn State guard) and Jalen Coleman-Lands (former DePaul and Illinois guard) and was better than its 12-20 record last season suggests. The team’s biggest issue remains its lackluster three-point shooting. But if it can hit a few from there, Iowa could have its hands full.

Still, Iowa is clearly the better team here. The Hawkeyes have a better star in Luka Garza and substantially more depth. Look for Iowa State to keep it close before fading.

  • Pick Against The Spread: Iowa

The Rest:

-Nebraska Cornhuskers at No. 8 Creighton Bluejays

  • Time/TV: 7:00 PM ET (BTN)
  • KenPom Spread: Creighton by 14

Husker fans entered this season with high hopes, but many of those disappeared on Wednesday with a frustrating loss to a so-so Georgia Tech team. It’s still early, but with a brutal Big Ten slate awaiting Nebraska in just a few days, it feels like the Huskers need to do something big to avoid another tough season and a slide. And that’s what Friday offers: an oportunity to beat a top 10 team on the road.

Obviously, pulling it off isn’t going to be easy. Creighton is a really solid team and has a star in Marcus Zegarowski in the backcourt. If Nebraska is going to pull it off, it’s going to come down to Teddy Allen and Trey McGowens. If those two play well, the Huskers have a shot.

  • Pick Against The Spread: Creighton

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Record Against The Spread: 6-5-2