Cyclone Fanatic Publisher, Chris Williams
I compare this game to the Toledo road trip two years ago. This Cyclone team is MUCH better than the one that lost to Matt Campbell’s Rockets. And Akron isn’t nearly as good as Toledo was. I do slightly worry about a Cy-Hawk letdown or sorts but even so, Iowa State should win this game comfortably. If they don’t, I will be very disappointed.
The Pick: Iowa State 35, Akron 17
Cyclone Fanatic Columnist, Brent Blum
Did you know Akron’s nickname came from tire shoe coverings called zippers back in the 1920s? Good for you, now you do. That is hopefully the most interesting part about Akron in this game. David Montgomery is good and has a good day.
The pick: Iowa State 37 Akron 20.
Cyclone Fanatic Analyst, Jeff Woody
One expression that applies in football is “Run ball, will travel.” Iowa State, for the first time in a while, has a legitimate running attack. That carries a ton of weight when you go on the road and attempt to nullify a team who wants to prove something. Montgomery runs for 150+.
The pick: ISU wins 38-17.
Cyclone Fanatic Staff Writer, Jared Stansbury
Was there a worse mascot to use in Mascot Mashup on the NCAA Football games than Zippy the Kangaroo? That simple answer is no. The Stanford Tree didn’t even have arms and it was still better. I don’t know how much better this year’s edition of the Zips are than Zippy was in mascot mashup, but after losing to Penn State 52-0 and beating a really (really) bad FCS team in week two, I’m not sure anyone else really knows either. This will be the game we see Matt Eaton’s talent become fully realized and David Montgomery pushes towards being the first Cyclone to run for 200 yards in a game since Mike Warren eclipsed the mark in Lubbock, Texas two years ago.
THE PICK: Iowa State 42, Akron 17
Cyclone Fanatic Staff Writer, Rob Gray
The Cyclones opened as a 9.5-point favorite and as of Thursday morning that had risen to 10.5. I have a hard time believing it will be that close, but it is ISU’s first road test — if the Zips have improved from their first two games. Simply put, this should be an easy cover for the Cyclones, who I expect to put up 40-plus again against a defense that can force interceptions, but otherwise seems shaky.
The pick: ISU 41, Akron 24
ROAD TRIP: Montgomery expects 60 family and friends for game at Akron
Cyclone Fanatic Contributor, Kirk Haaland
This game has a strikingly similar setup to the 2009 season where Iowa State was 1-1 after a loss to Iowa (in a not nearly as close game) and was headed to Ohio to take on Kent State. We didn’t know much about that team yet but the week’s build-up was centered on “must win” discussion. In the end, Iowa State was the much better team and handled Kent State with ease in a 34-14 win.
I tend to think we’re setting up for something similar this week. I do think ISU’s run game will show more promise and the defense will have a stronger performance, but the CFB Analytics prediction machine
THE PICK: Iowa State 39, Akron 28
What’s the root cause for ISU’s improved pass pro? It’s complicated
Cyclone Fanatic Contributor, Kevin Fitzpatrick
After a tough rivalry loss, will the Cyclones come out shaky and uninspired, or will they be charged up and ready to get back on track? I say the latter in a 3+ TD victory. Don’t be surprised to see a guy like Trever Ryen or Deshaunte Jones have a big day as Akron focuses on Allen Lazard, Hakeem Butler, and David Montgomery based on film from ISU’s first two games.
THE PICK: Iowa State 45, Akron 20.
Cyclone Fanatic Analyst, Jay Jordan
If ISU is what I think they are, they will run for 200 yards and throw for another 250. But, this is a tougher spot that most expect. On the road between two big games = trap game. ISU’s mental state is tested here and a fast start would be good to see. I want to see discipline on defense and another weapon emerge on offense. It is time for DeShaunte Jones to break out of his funk and be a factor. I think we will see all of that and ISU puts together a 4 quarter effort and leaves no doubt.
THE PICK: Iowa State 48 Akron 17