Iowa State at West Va
Time: 3:00 PM CST, Saturday (ESPN)
Spread: IOST -10
Odds c/o 5dimes
Iowa State is 3-2 following its 49-24 win over TCU in Week 6. The Cyclones take to the road this week as it faces West Virginia. Iowa State is 10-point favorites in the affair, which has its over/under set at 56.5 points according to college football oddsmakers at 5dimes. The game will air at 3 PM CST Saturday on ESPN.
Iowa State has played just once on the road thus far going into week 7. That game was a 21-23 loss to Baylor. The Cyclones have been strong defensively and its pass offense has more or less carried it on the other end. Iowa State is limiting opponents to just 22.2 points per game while managing 37.6 itself (No. 21) with a passing offense that ranks No. 7 in the nation at 327.6 yards per game. Credit quarterback Brock Purdy with that dominance. He has thrown for 1,578 yards with a 70.8 percent passing clip, 10 touchdowns, and just two interceptions.
Purdy also leads the rushing effort with his team-best 203 yards on 45 attempts and team-best five touchdowns rushing. No. 1 running back Johnnie Lang has 39 carries for 182 yards and three TDs.
Kene Nwangwu may need more touches as the No. 2 back, but those have largely been usurped by Purdy. Kene is averaging nearly eight yards per rush, but he has seen just 15 carries thus far, with two other running backs having both more carries and (Far) fewer total yards. Purdy’s top-three receiving targets are all having huge seasons. Deshaunte Jones, Tarique Milton, and tight end Charlie Kolar have amassed 444, 374, and 274 yards, respectively. The trio has also caught five of the team’s 12 touchdowns.
Wide receiver La’Michael Pettway leads the team in receiving touchdowns with three, and he has caught the fourth-most total yardage at 173 this season. Iowa State is a dangerous offensive team and a stingy defensive one, and it looks to have a clear path to dominating West Virginia, though this team remains relatively untested on the road, as just one of its five games has been away from Iowa.
West Virginia is 3-2 and in fourth place in the Big 12. It lost last week to No. 11 Texas, and it lost in Week 2 to Missouri, while having defeated James Madison, NC State, and Kansas in Weeks 1, 3, and 4.
The Mountaineers have had its issues offensively. The team ranks just No. 88 in the nation at 26.2 points per game while having a horrible rush attack that ranks No. 119 and a mediocre passing game that ranks No. 64. To be 3-2 with this standing speaks to how fortunate the Mountaineers have been at closing out games. Two of its three wins came by a touchdown or less.
Austin Kendall has certainly had his struggles in the pocket. While his 65.8 percent passing and 1,238 yards is solid, he has thrown nearly as many picks (7) as touchdowns (9) and his eight sacks thus far have come at costly times for the Mountaineers. Kendall also averages under two yards per rush, though he does have a rushing touchdown on the season. Kennedy McKoy leads the team in total rushing yardage with 181 yards, but he averages just 3.4 yards-per-carry. McKoy has three of the team’s seven rushing touchdowns, with red-zone specialist Martell Pettaway claiming two of the other TD rushes.
The Mountaineers have scored nine TDs via its passing game, and top target Sam Jones has 32 catches for 329 yards and two touchdowns. George Campbell leads the Mountaineers with three receiving touchdowns, but he has just four total catches on the year for 100 yards. McKoy has done his work out of the backfield with 19 catches (no. 3 on the team) for 81 yards. The Mountaineers have to get Kendall to improve his throw-aways and perhaps even suffer some sacks to cut down on the abundant interceptions. The Mountaineers are probably fortunate to be 3-2 considering some of these glaring deficiencies.