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The 6-2 Iowa Hawkeyes will go on the road Friday night to face off with the 7-1 Michigan Wolverines in the Crisler Center at 6:30 PM ET. Michigan is coming off their first loss to number one ranked Louisville, while Iowa is coming off an impressive blowout win over Syracuse. Both of these teams play fast and average over 77 points scored per game. Michigan is favored by eight points with a 143.5 over/under.
Iowa on a rollThe Iowa Hawkeyes have won four of their last five games and are coming off a commanding 68-54 win over the Syracuse Orange. Luka Garza led the way with 23 points and nine boards on 9-15 shooting. Guards Jordan Bohannon (17 pts) and Joe Wieskamp (13 pts) were the only others in double-figures and Wieskamp added nine rebounds. They held the Orange to just 54 points on 36.5% shooting. The Hawkeyes forced 16 turnovers and controlled the pace from the get.
This team is led by 6’11 junior big man Luka Garza, who averages 20 points and 10 rebounds a game. CJ Frederick (11.1 pts, 3.3 ast, 1.9 reb) and Joe Wieskamp (11.1 pts, 5.5 reb, 1.9 ast) are the only other players that average double-figures and both play a key role as complementary pieces to Garza. Iowa ranks 4th in the country in assists at 18.3 per game and play at the country’s 60th fastest pace (79.1 PPG). The Hawkeyes play fast and spread the ball around, but the main focus is on Luka Garza at all times.
Can they bounce back?Michigan was on an unbelievable seven-game winning streak before Louisville smashed them 58-43 last time out. Michigan looked terrible in the first half, but Jon Teske (18 pts, 10 reb) helped make the second-half look like a game they belonged to play in. He was the only player in double-figures and captain Zavier Simpson struggled with nine points and four turnovers. Louisville was the first time to slow Michigan down and they will be back to a middle of the road defense in this game.
Forwards Jon Teske (13.9 pts, 9.8 reb, 2.3 blk) and Isaiah Livers (15.3 pts, 3.3 reb, 1.3 ast) are the leading point scorers for Michigan and man a top 10 paint in the nation. Point guard Zavier Simpson (11.9 pts, 8.9 ast, 4.3 reb) is the captain of this team and every play goes through his hands. He struggled against Louisville and Elijah Brooks (11.5 pts, 3.1 reb, 2.5 ast) is the only other player that averages 30+ minutes and he’s a blue guy that often covers the best opposing wing player. This team is pretty balanced, though concentrated to just four players.
- Michigan are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games.
- Michigan are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games when playing at home against Iowa.
- Iowa are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games when playing on the road against Michigan.
- Iowa are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games on the road.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I like Michigan to bounce back after a tough loss to Louisville. The Wolverines shoot 49.6% (20th in NCAA) from the field and are just as good from three at 39.7% (21st). Both of these teams play fast, but Michigan plays a more refined (1.2 AST/TO) brand of basketball and they have the weapons to neutralize Luka Garza. Michigan to bounce back and cover the eight points at home.
Prediction: Michigan -8
Full-Game Total Pick
Both of these teams play fast, but the 143.5 over/under has taken that into consideration. I like this game to fly way under as while these teams play fast, they are not bad defensively. The both allow less than 70 points per game and out rebound their opponents. Look for Michigan to slow this game down at home and for this under to cruise.
Prediction: Under 144.5