NCAA Football

Iowa State Cyclones 2015 NCAA Football Gambling Odds & Predictions

2015-16 Football Previews – (Big 12) – Cyclones

Iowa State is a program not without talent – maybe even a couple future NFLers in their midst – but fundamentally was still winless in Big 12 play last year and narrowly escaped in-state rival Iowa and MAC opponent Toledo. It’s not inconceivable that the Cyclones could have winless. Drastic, drastic improvement is needed.

NCAA Football Gambling Lines

Big 12 Odds

Iowa State
Head Coach: Paul Rhoads
2014 Record: 2-10
Iowa State Odds to win 2015 BCS: Bet The Field +50000
Odds to win the Big 12: +3300

While ISU returns experienced senior Sam Richardson under center, the Cyclones bring back only four starters on defense and some players must get tangibly better if head coach Paul Rhoads desires to keep his job.

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There are things over the course of a season that are out of one’s control, medical redshirts handed out, notably, but Rhoads, defensive co-ordinator Wally Burnham and new offensive head man (and former Kansas boss) Mark Mangino must spark the lightbulb in these players this season.

The Cyclones have only won five games in the past two seasons. With that at the forefront of peoples minds, let’s look at strengths and weaknesses of this Iowa State squad.

Team Strengths:

Receiver. Receiver, receiver, receiver. In senior Quenton Bundrage, sophomore Allen Lazard and junior D’Vario Montgomery (who goes 6″6, 236 lbs, no less) QB Richardson has no shortage of targets to utilize. Bundrage broke school records in 2013 before tearing his ACL last season, it is important he gets back to ’13 form, which saw him snag nine TDs.

Montgomery and Lazard are both big and talented. Crafty senior Brett Medders is also in the mix. Richardson-to-whoever-is-running-patterns is going to be the key element of Iowa State’s offensive attack.

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On the other side of the ball, keep an eye on sophomore FS Kamari Cotton-Moya. He was last year’s Big 12 Freshman Defensive POY and he’ll join a talented defensive secondary that includes Nigel Tribune and Sam E. Richardson. Strong safety T.J. Mutcherson was dismissed from the team, so senior Qujuan Floyd hopes to be adequate.

There are zero concerns on special teams, thanks to solid junior K Cole Netten, sophomore P Cole Downing and junior college recruit Jomal Wiltz, who will return punts and kicks.

Team Weaknesses

Richardson is a solid QB in the Big 12, but he may be stifled by a patchwork offensive line. The line has been decimated by injuries in recent seasons, so it’s hard to know what the team has among the projected starters. Sophomore OT Jake Campos looks to anchor the unit, but Richardson could spend a lot of time eluding pressure.

Iowa State’s two leading RBs from last year are gone, so Tyler Brown and freshman Mike Warren need to step up. If they cannot carry the mail, sophomore Martinez Syria (fantastic name) is an option.

The LB corps is a shambles, so there’s a lot of eyes on junior MLB Jordan Harris. He’s got ability and he’s had a strong spring, but he was redshirted last season due to his failure to grasp the defense. It says a lot about ISU’s depth that they are inserting him in the middle.

The Cyclones need to also find someone to get to the opposing quarterback consistently.

2015-16 Iowa State Cyclones Prediction: 3-9

An optimist would say that watching the WR corps will be fun this year. That might be true, and if the O-line can keep Richardson upright, it could be quite prolific. Still, this roster has some sizeable holes and without some unforeseen stars emerging, the Cyclones will have tough sledding this season.

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It doesn’t help that ISU always has the Iowa Hawkeyes on its slate, in the Battle for the Cy-Hawk Trophy. That is a non-conference game that surely takes a bit out of the team early in the year (Sept. 12 this year). The defense should improve, but it won’t be enough for Rhoads to keep his position in Ames.

2015 Cyclones Schedule

9/5/15 8:00 PM N. IOWA
9/12/15 4:30 PM IOWA
9/19/15 TBD @TOL
10/3/15 TBD KANS
10/10/15 TBD @TX. TECH
10/17/15 TBD TCU
10/24/15 TBD @BAYLOR
10/31/15 TBD TEXAS
11/7/15 TBD @OU
11/14/15 TBD OK. ST.
11/21/15 TBD @KSU
11/28/15 TBD @WVU

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By James Hayes

James has been naming every player on the EA Sports video game rosters for half a decade now, he’s finally putting his knowledge to better use writing for us here at Your comments are welcome below…Give Us Your Take!