ESB “GAME OF NIGHT”: IOWA @ MARYLAND PREVIEW (1-30)

ELITE SHADOW BETS STAFF “GAME OF NIGHT” FULL PREVIEW: IOWA @ MARYLAND (1-30-20)

 

TWO RED HOT TEAMS MEET FOR 2ND TIME AS IOWA GOES FOR SWEEP IN COLLEGE PARK!

 

VEGAS BETTING ODDS:  MARYLAND TERPS (-5 1/2) vs. IOWA HAWKEYES  ~  TOTAL: (145)

IOWA RECORD: (15-5) – BIG 10 (6-3)   —–   MARYLAND RECORD: (16-4) – BIG 10 (6-3)

Well just a few days ago we previewed Iowa’s big game vs. Wisconsin and we nailed the outcome and the Big 10 has continued since to be the best Conference in the country. There are 6 ranked teams and 12 teams already have at least 11 wins. Tonight we have two teams tied (6-3) and with really no freebie win nights in Big 10 every game is a game to stay up in Big 10 and also a huge resume builder. Past few nights we told you about teams that were in desperate need of big wins (Texas Tech and Virginia) and both got them, exactly as we predicted. Tonight is much different as both these teams, barring a collapse of the century, will be in the Big Dance and likely 5 seed area or possibly higher. So no urgency of “MUST WIN” tonight for either.

Both teams come into tonight played winning ball of late with Iowa winning 5 straight and Maryland 3 straight, with back to back very impressive comeback wins. These two teams are both really good teams, but for most part play at totally different styles. Iowa likes to play fast and usually is in higher scoring games. Maryland is more a grinder and plays not such high scoring games. Iowa scores an average 79 points a game and Maryland allows just 62 points per game. So something will have to give here tonight. One note to add though is Maryland was playing very sluggish on Offense for a few games when the shit finally hit the fan at Halftime two games ago at Northwestern. They trailed by 14 at Half and the Offense was totally out of sync. So Terps HC Mark Turgeon told his team to go and play “fast and loose”. Since then they have a 11 point win over Northwestern (outscored NW by 25 in second half) and then a huge second half comeback again at Indiana on Sunday. 

Neither team has a good overall FG% as Iowa sits at just 45% and Maryland a really poor 41%. Yet both teams simply have so much talent they overcome those poor % numbers and grab “WINS”. Both possess some really superstar type talent and that alone is what carries both teams to these gaudy records so far. Iowa may have the best player in the country in Center Luke Garza, who is a scoring and rebounding machine (he is a daily double in points/rebounds) and he has averaged now 26 points per game in this current Iowa 5 game win streak. Maryland may have the best PG in the country in A. Cowan (likely fastest player in all CBB to get ball basket to basket) and then they have a solid big too in J. Smith who is starting to break out and look like a budding superstar in the Big 10. In his last 4 games he’s averaging 18 points per game and he’s got 11 double-doubles and he’s on a smoking hot run shooting 3’s in January (14-24), which is really making it hard for opposing Defenses to guard him.

FIRST MEETING WAS A IOWA BEAT DOWN OF THE TERPS

These two teams met January 10th and the final score was 67-49. The game wasn’t even that close. Terps HC Turgeon called it “one of the worst games any team I ever coached played”. Maryland shot a pathetic (32%) and just (4-22) from 3-land and the game got ugly very quickly and just turned into a wire to wire Hawkeyes blowout. Iowa had a 44-32 rebound advantage and star Garza has 21-13 night. Terps star A. Cowan had his worst game of the season going (2-10) from the field.

BOTH TEAMS ELITE IN OFFENSIVE REBOUNDS AND OFFENSIVE EFFICIENCY

Iowa is the #3 Offensive Efficiency and Maryland is #27 in the entire country. Both are fantastic Offensive rebounding teams too with Iowa at 12.2 per game and Maryland at 12.5 per game. 

HOT vs. COLD STATS TO KNOW

Maryland is the worst FG% team in the Big 10 at just 41.4% and Iowa is number 1 in points scored (79) and 2nd in 3’s (35.2%). It will be up to Maryland’s #11 overall Defensive Efficiency to slow down this high flying Hawkeyes Offense tonight. 

MARYLAND DEFENSE HAS AMPED IT UP A FEW NOTCHES OF LATE

Maryland has really start to play great Defense, allowing it’s last 3 opponents to shoot just 36%, 31% and 36% in FG%. In Iowa’s last 3 games vs. slow down pace teams = all 3 games went “UNDER” the posted Total. Their last 4 Home games in Big 10 play they have allowed 57. 67, 75 and 59. 

DOG IN THIS SERIES CASHING THE TICKETS OF LATE

The past 5 meetings between these two the Dog has cashed the ticket 4 times.

MARYLAND HAS BEEN A REALLY SLOW STARTER

Maryland has trailed at Half this year 8x and they have trailed in over half of their Big 10 game schedule (5 of the 9). They have been the “Comeback” kids the past 2 games but both those wins were against more bottom Big 10 feeders. It’s unlikely they fall behind 10 or more again to Iowa tonight and comeback to win.

IOWA 3-BALLS ARE ON FIRE

In this 5 game win streak they are shooting an incredible (37.7%) from 3-land. One added note this 5 game win streak started with a win over Maryland in a game their top 3 point shooter, CJ Fredrick, did not play. He is the best 3 point shooting talent in the Big 10 and possibly the country. It was interesting to note how “next man up” J. Weiskamp stepped into his spot and scored a game high 26 points in that blowout win over the Terps a few weeks ago.

MARYLAND IS PERFECT AT HOME

Maryland is now (11-0) at home and all 4 losses have come on the Road. Take note those 4 losses were to very good teams: Penn State, Iowa, Seton Hall and Wisconsin. Maryland has played the 12th toughest schedule in all of CBB this season so they are as tested as any team as we head into February. Maryland will try to continue it’s hot 3-ball shooting (13 and 12 threes made in last 2 games). They have only hit 10 threes or more 4x all year. They may need to make that number 5 if they are to win here tonight.

FINAL SHOT

Once again we have a game of two different style teams but two really solid teams so these games are the toughest to handicap. Maryland at Home is simply near unbeatable and so far nobody has done it this season. Playing in front of 18k fans (14th largest in CBB) is a big adrenaline rush the entire night. These Terp fans are loud and they stand half the game. The line here is a bit surprising though as although the Terps are (11-0) at Home, they shoot so badly it’s not easy to lay (-5 1/2) points and feel really good about your bet. Now they are doing it against a red hot team, shooting lights out of late, possessing the best player in the country and a bevy of sharpshooters who move the ball really well (Iowa averages a fantastic 18 assists per game – Terps just 12) so they will have to come out firing on all cylinders from the get go and play maybe their best Defensive game of the season. The Terps are a rare team that can somewhat match up with Iowa Stud Center Garza, as Smith is a beast too and has the size to at least push him a bit more than most teams can. Neither team in any “Must win” mode so that means both can play “fast and loose”, just the way Terps HC Turgeon called his team to start doing two games ago when down 14 at Half to Northwestern. A few nights ago we saw a desperate Virginia team play an ugly slow style and sneak out a win. Last night we told you Texas Tech was the “solid play” to get their much needed win and it was a wire to wire winner. This game is really hard to predict as most teams that get blown out by the same team just a few weeks ago will usually remember that loss well. The Terps are already a great Home team so we’d have expected them to be amped up for another Top 25 team and a team tied in Big 10 standings with them to come out with some fire. You just can’t overlook so many Terps slow starts this year. The reason is they really are a two player team. It’s Cowan and Smith and so both must play really well or the outcomes have usually not been good. Iowa has other guys are are really good besides Garza and now they are hitting the 3 ball lights out as we all expected when this season started. This game has “CLOSE” written all over it and although we won’t be betting it, we’d LEAN to Iowa getting a somewhat generous (+5 1/2) points. 

Enjoy the game tonight and may all your wagers be “WINNING” ones! Also be sure to check out one of our Cappers: THE NETWORK, as he is simply “ON FIRE” with his Free Picks and his NBA picks are off charts right now. If you aren’t winning, hop on his back and build your bankroll big time. 

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