Nebraska Cornhuskers (10-12 SU, 10-10 ATS, 8-12 O/U) vs. Iowa Hawkeyes (13-10 SU, 8-11-1 ATS, 10-9-1 O/U)
NCAAB: Sunday, February 5, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. EST
The Line: Iowa Hawkeyes -6. Total: 151.5.
The Iowa Hawkeyes will be trying to extend their winning streak to three games when they host the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday afternoon. Iowa is coming off consecutive victories over Ohio State and Rutgers. The Cornhuskers have lost six of their last seven contests after most recently falling at Michigan State on Thursday.
Stepping up in Morrow’s absence
After beating Iowa exactly one month ago, Nebraska promptly lost five games in a row. They ended that skid by upsetting Purdue last Sunday only to return to their losing ways with a 72-61 setback at the hands of Michigan State earlier this week. Against the Spartans, Nebraska’s Jordy Tshimanga provided an inside presence the team had mostly lacked since Ed Morrow Jr. (10.1 points per game, 7.9 rebounds per game) went down with a foot injury six games ago. Morrow, a 6-foot-11 freshman center finished with season-highs in points (15) and boards (nine).
Tai Webster (team-high 18.1 ppg) is 13 away from becoming Nebraska’s 28th 1,000-point scorer and the senior guard is second in the Big Ten in scoring against conference opponents (19.5 ppg). Glynn Watson Jr. (14.4 ppg) has delivered more than 14 points only once since his 34-point explosion against Iowa, but the sophomore guard still ranks third in the Big Ten in steals (2.0 spg), sixth in scoring (16.6 ppg), and 10th in three-point percentage (47.1 percent) during conference action.
Iowa was recently without Big Ten leading scorer Peter Jok for two straight games. His absence came on he heels of three consecutive setbacks, so the Hawkeyes appeared to be in serious trouble. But with Jok on the sideline they reeled off successive wins over Ohio State and Rutgers, and he is expected to return from an ankle injury on Sunday. Jok (21.0 ppg) suffered a back injury in a Jan. 15 blowout loss at Northwestern that began. The ankle problem, which flared up two games later, finally relegated him to being a spectator.
The Hawkeyes set season-highs in steals (15) and three-point percentage (61.1) against the Scarlet Knights on Tuesday. They have assisted on 45 of their 62 made field goals over their last two contests. Guard Jordan Bohannon (9.2 ppg, 4.7 apg), who has connected on 9-of-17 beyond the arc over that stretch, is one of only two freshmen in the country with 50 three-pointers and 100 assists during this 2016-17 campaign. He needs only three more triples to break the school’s freshman record of 52.
The Nebraska Cornhuskers are:
- 4-1 Under in their last five overall
- 10-4 Under in their last 14 road games
- 7-3 Under in their last 10 games following a loss
The Iowa Hawkeyes are:
- 4-1 Under in their last five home games against teams with losing road records
- 6-1 Under in their last seven road games against teams with road winning percentages under .400
- 8-3-1 Under in their last 12 games following an ATS win
Watson has cooled off just a bit for Nebraska since his performance against the Hawkeyes last month. As for Iowa, Jok should return but may not be 100 percent. Iowa’s Nicholas Baer (6.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg) has only two double-digit scoring efforts since Big Ten play began. The under is 4-1 in the Cornhuskers’ last five overall, 10-4 in their last 14 on the road, and 7-3 in their last 10 following a loss. It is also 4-1 in the Hawkeyes’ last five at home against opponents with losing road records, 6-1 in their last seven on the road against opponents with road winning percentages under .400, and 8-3-1 in their last 12 following an ATS win. Look for this one to stay under the total.