The Iowa State Cyclones are 0-6 straight up and 3-3 against the spread in their last six games as the betting underdog. The Cyclones will try to break that streak of losses as an underdog in the Sweet 16 against the Virginia Cavaliers.
Iowa State is a 5-point betting underdog in Friday's game according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The Cavaliers are 5-0 SU and ATS in their last five games as a favorite of 5.5 points or less.
The Cyclones have one of the most explosive offenses in the nation, ranking 12th with 82.1 points per game. That offense has been on full display in the NCAA Tournament with a 94-81 win over No. 13 Iona in the first round and a 78-61 win over No. 12 Arkansas-Little Rock to advance to the Sweet 16.
Points won't be easy to come by against the Virginia Cavaliers, but the Cyclones will try to push the tempo to take Virginia out of its comfort zone.
While Iowa State hasn't won in its last six games as an underdog, the numbers are a bit more promising as a small dog. In the Cyclones' last 12 games as an underdog of 5.5 points or less, Iowa State is 9-3 ATS and 7-5 SU per the OddsShark College Basketball Database.
The No. 1 Virginia Cavaliers finished the regular season with the second best scoring defense in the nation allowing only 59.5 points per game, a particularly impressive feat playing in the loaded ACC. The Cavaliers have continued to smother their opponents in the NCAA Tournament, improving to 15-3 SU over their last 18 games with a 10-3 ATS record over their last 13. Virginia is 10-0 SU and 9-1 ATS in its last 10 games as a favorite.
Friday's total is set at 141 points. The UNDER is 12-3 in Virginia's last 15 games.
This game sets up a major clash in styles, with Virginia focusing on defense and keeping the game slow and Iowa State loving to push the tempo and fire shots early and often. The team that is able to dictate the pace will likely be the one to come out on top.