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Baylor at Iowa State: Three Keys and Prediction

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NCAA Basketball: Iowa State at Baylor Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

Baylor takes on Iowa State at 8:00 on Tuesday in Ames. The game airs on ESPN2.

The Bears won the first matchup. They had Tristan Clark, King McClure and Makai Mason in that game. Clark is certainly out. McClure and Mason officially remain day-to-day. If the senior guards are out, the Bears will need a very hot shooting day to have a chance.

Three Keys:

1) Offensive rebounding- Baylor didn’t crush Iowa State on the glass in Waco, but they’ll need to in Ames. The Cyclones are 170th in defensive rebounding. Baylor is 2nd in offensive rebounding.

2) Limit Iowa State’s 3-point attempts- Iowa State pulled out a giant victory in Manhattan on Saturday. The Cyclones finished that one 14-of-24 from beyond the arc. Baylor needs to force Iowa State to take 2-point shots. That’s a tough recipe, and this might be a game to try and play more man-to-man (though limiting the Cyclones dribble drives won’t be easy).

3) Shoot all semi-open threes- The Cyclones are 234th in percentage of shots from deep. They sometimes rotate too much and can give up open shots. Baylor has shot 33% and 34% from two in their last couple of games. They just haven’t been able to score inside. Without McClure, Baylor should accept that they need to get a little lucky to win.

Prediction:

Last time Baylor played Iowa State, I shifted my prediction from the podcast to the website, and Baylor ended up winning. I’ll do that again. I hope I’m wrong, but with Baylor’s injuries—and playing on the road—this is going to be very difficult. I’ll take Iowa State 74-66.