Iowa St. vs. Virginia: Midwest Region Sweet 16 betting preview


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No. 4 Iowa St. Cyclones vs. No. 1 Virginia Cavaliers (-5, 141)

Game to be played at United Center, Chicago, IL.

It will be a contrast in styles when No. 1 seed Virginia puts its shutdown defense up against No. 4 seed Iowa State’s high-powered attack in an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 matchup in Chicago on Friday. The Cavaliers, who are seeking their first visit to the Elite Eight since 1995, own the second-ranked scoring defense (59.5) in the country, while the Cyclones have the third-best offensive output (82.1) among remaining tournament teams.

They are hoping to reach a regional final for the first time in 16 years and after averaging 86 points in first- and second-round wins – are poised to impose their style of play on the top team in the Midwest Region. “It’s obviously going to be a toughness battle,” Iowa State forward Georges Niang, who has scored 28 points in both tournament games, told reporters. “Who’s going to be tougher? Who’s going to really will their team to a win? That’s what it comes down to.” The Cavaliers had some issues imposing their will against Butler in the second round before a solid stretch run lifted them to a 77-69 victory. Anthony Gill remained a rock for Virginia as the senior forward posted his second straight 19-point effort and hauled in a game-high eight rebounds.

TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, CBS

LINE HISTORY: Top seed Virginia opened as 5.5-point favorites over Iowa St. but the line was quickly adjusted down to -5. The total began the week at 141 and hasn’t moved. Check out the complete line history here.

MATCHUP CHART:

ABOUT IOWA STATE (23-11, 17-13-1 ATS, 14-16-1 O/U): Guard Matt Thomas has taken a liking to tournament play, averaging 15 points while making 7-of-15 3-pointers through the first two rounds. The junior, who has one turnover in 77 minutes in those two games, is 12-of-24 from beyond the arc in six career contests in the Big Dance. Niang is winding up a stellar career with a flourish, producing double digits in made field goals in a career-high three consecutive games.

ABOUT THE VIRGINIA (28-7, 18-14-1 ATS, 13-20 O/U): The second-round win allowed ACC Player of the Year Malcolm Brogdon (22 points) to put forth perhaps the best of his seven career tournament games, and the only one in which he has shot better than 50 percent from the field (8-of-14). The Cavaliers have also been getting great production off the bench from big man Mike Tobey, who has made 9-of-11 shots, grabbed eight rebounds and blocked three shots in 24 total minutes of tournament play. Guard Marial Shayok added 12 points versus Butler and has three double-digit efforts in his last four games after producing a total of four in his previous 29 affairs.

TRENDS:

* Cyclones are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
* Cavaliers are 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
* Over is 5-1 in Cyclones last 6 vs. Atlantic Coast.
* Under is 12-3 in Cavaliers last 15 overall.

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