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Iowa State has a severe case of little brother syndrome with Iowa. Matt Campbell has done a phenomenal job at the helm, but winning this game at the beginning of September is his white whale. While the Cyclones looked great against Southeastern Missouri State, the University of Phoenix could beat that school at football. Iowa State’s 2022 team is very reminiscent of the beginning of Moneyball. Breece Hall is on the Jets, Charlie Kolar is a Raven, Chase Allen is a Bear, Jake Hummel is a Ram, and Mike Rose is searching for an NFL contract. Last year’s Iowa State defense has a lot of guys playing meaningful football…just not in Ames. That being said, Gerry Vaughn is a 235-pound thumper who can work in the middle and make lots and lots of tackles, and Sophomore Hunter Dekkers made Southeastern Missouri State’s secondary look like swiss cheese. This team still has plenty of young talent.
Iowa’s offense looked bad last week; any fan will tell you that. When the final score of your football game mirrors that of a mid-August showdown between the Cardinals and Cubs…that’s not good. However, this is a team that competed for a Big 10 championship last season, and a lot of those guys are still around. The ninth-best offense in the nation last year is even better this year. Jack Campbell is a bloodhound, Riley Moss is better at intercepting than the CIA, and Adam Bock is a future NFL talent. Iowa’s offensive line and Spencer Petras will prove that they can run an offense that flows. Rivalry games tend to bring out the best in the guys that hear criticism the most. Vegas likes Iowa -3.5. I think Iowa wins by a field goal, but the Cyclones cover. The Cyclones haven’t beat their rival since before the Trump administration, and if there was any team that could’ve snapped that streak, it would have been last year’s. Take Iowa to win, Iowa State to cover, and take your free $200 from DraftKings!