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Kansas Jayhawks vs Iowa State Cyclones Odds and Game Pick (2021)

by September 29, 2021

Iowa State enters this game coming off a rough week. They fell to an impressive Baylor squad, 29-31. However, they should bounce back this week against a 1-3 Kansas team at home. The good news for Iowa State is that it is finally Brocktober. Brock Purdy is 11-2 in his career at Iowa State during October. Both losses came against Oklahoma State. The other teams he has played in October include Oklahoma (twice), Texas Tech (four times), West Virginia (twice), Kansas, and TCU. Those are high-quality opponents for Big 12 play.

Kansas is struggling under first-year coach Lance Leipold. Their defense is giving up 41 points per game, and their offense is scoring 19 points per game. This Kansas team has not won more than three games since 2009. On the bright side, Kansas already has more wins this year than they did all of last year. That said, junior quarterback Jason Bean looked inconsistent⁠ — he has shown flashes of great play in some games but has struggled in others. For example, he threw for only 57 yards against Baylor and completed only 47% of his passes. Kansas will need the good Jason Bean to show up for this one. 

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  • Opening Lines: Iowa State -32.5, Total 58.5
  • Last Game: October 31, 2020, Iowa State 52-22
  • Current Winning Streak: Iowa State (6)
  • Last 11 games, Iowa State 10-1
  • Average score through the last 11 games, Iowa State 28-13
  • Iowa State 2-4 against the spread their last 6 games
  • Kansas 1-12-1 against the spread their last 14 games


Matt Campbell and Iowa State have dominated against Kansas. They are undefeated since their arrival in Ames five years ago. They have beaten Kansas by an average of 22 points per game. That said, Iowa State’s 2-2 start raises some red flags. They had always struggled against great defenses in the past ⁠— Iowa State’s overall record against top-25 defenses is 2-14 under Campbell. Iowa and Baylor both feature top-25 defenses. However, Kansas is ranked 124th overall in total defense, so Iowa State should put up points. 

Iowa State might not play well against top defenses, but neither do most other teams, and Iowa State is ranked third nationally in total defense. The Kansas offense is producing just 19 points per game. They will struggle to score against this defense. Kansas has one thing going for them on offense: Iowa State can struggle against mobile quarterbacks. In the past, Bohannon, Brewer, Thompson, Ehlinger, and Rattler have all found success against this Iowa State defense. They are also all mobile quarterbacks. Kansas’ Jason Bean has shown off his mobility by leading the team in rushing with 272 yards and two touchdowns. 

Kansas’ defense has been awful this year. They are giving up 41 points per game. Duke, CCU, and Baylor all have been able to put up points against them this year. Baylor and Iowa State are comparable teams, and Baylor beat Kansas 45-7. Kansas has struggled to stop the run, and Iowa State has one of the best running backs in college football, Breece Hall. Outside of Kansas having a mobile quarterback, this matchup favors Iowa State. 

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Bottom Line

These teams are hard to read consistently. Iowa State typically hits the under and struggles against the spread. Kansas also struggles against the spread but tends to hit the over. With that, I would limit your units on this game. Also, this spread is huge, which means anything could happen. I have to go with the numbers we have seen in the past. The average score of this game in the past 11 games is 28-13. Kansas is bad. We will see Iowa State score more than 28 points. The problem is that Kansas has a mobile quarterback, and Brock Purdy has been turnover-prone all year. I think we see Iowa State run the ball with Breece Hall and control the clock in this game, which is a perfect opportunity for Kansas to cover what’s almost a five-touchdown spread. 

Pick: Kansas +34.5  (-110)

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Cameron Lynch is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Cameron, check out his archive and follow him @captron26.

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