According to one Iowa sportsbook, the ceiling for the Cyclones and Hawkeyes this season is 20 wins. While that oddsmaker is more optimistic about Iowa State this season, the Iowa college basketball win totals don’t have either team reaching that magic number.
In order to defy those Iowa sports betting expectations, both Iowa teams from major conferences will have to pull off a few upsets. Both the Cyclones and Hawkeyes have a few such opportunities.
Details on the Iowa college basketball win totals
DraftKings, one of the leading Iowa retail sportsbooks, isn’t live with its mobile component in the Hawkeye State yet. Regardless, that book posted win totals for many teams throughout the country.
Among them are Iowa and Iowa State. DraftKings has the Cyclones at 19.5, while the Hawkeyes are pegged at 16.
Currently, the lines on either the over or the under on either team are all set at -110. Those lines may shift once both teams get into action, however.
Iowa begins its season at home on Nov. 8 against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. Iowa State opens at home on Nov. 5 against Mississippi Valley State.
How those teams fare in the Big Ten and Big 12 could ultimately decide whether they exceed DraftKings’ expectations, though Iowa might have a tougher road to 17 or more wins.
What’s wetting the Hawkeyes’ wings in 2019-20
Iowa lost four players and two starters from a team that won 23 games and advanced to the Round of 32 in the NCAA tournament last season. While there are some reinforcements like Valparaiso transfer Bakari Evelyn on the roster, it’s uncertain if they can make up for the lost production.
Another major concern is the injury to Jordan Bohannon. If Bohannon is hampered throughout the season, the backcourt for the Hawkeyes leaves much to be desired.
As is the case every year in the Big Ten, the schedule is daunting. Iowa’s non-conference slate also includes four teams that qualified for the NCAA tournament last season.
Add to that a grueling 11-game stretch to end the conference season. It features six road games, and the five home contests boast possible top-25 foes like Illinois, Purdue and Ohio State.
Naturally one of those intimidating non-conference opponents will be Iowa State again this season. While the Cyclones get that game on their home court this year, there are challenges for Iowa State as well.
Cyclones also counting on unproven quantities
If Iowa has to hope for new names to fill important roles, Iowa State carries that narrative even further. The Cyclones lost five of their six top scorers from 2018-19.
Fortunately for Iowa State, transfer help is available as well. Guard Rasir Bolton represents that reinforcement, coming over for his sophomore season with an 11.6 points per game average.
If Bolton can contribute at that same level, that gives the Cyclones some much-needed depth. Their non-conference slate has some imposing foes as well, highlighted by the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.
DraftKings has three Big 12 teams pegged to win more than 20 games this season, so if Iowa State can get some decent play from its freshman group, it’s possible the Cyclones could get to 20 wins. Much of that depends on solid play from that bench, however.
While both Iowa major conference men’s basketball teams could be described as bubble teams right now, the potential exists for more. Like any other team in the country, it will come down to execution.