Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Hilton Coliseum
KenPom Prediction: 84-65, Iowa State
1 – No post-Maui hangover
How will Iowa State react to returning home after what was an emotional and taxing week in Hawaii?
The Cyclones showed they can battle with anyone despite their short bench during the week they spend at the Maui Invitational. They came home with fifth-place but finishing with a 2-1 record on the islands is nothing to sneeze at.
It would be nice to see the team come out fast after getting an opportunity to rest over the Thanksgiving holiday. Iowa State will have absolutely no trouble with the Mavs if they play the way they did in last Wednesday’s win over San Diego State.
2 – Slowing Zach Jackson
Jackson is by far Omaha’s leading scorer at 21.8 points per game. The 6-foot-5 senior guard will probably be one of the best players in the Summit this season and not allowing him to heat up will be crucial to a comfortable Iowa State win.
Junior guard JT Gibson is Jackson’s backcourt running mate and is the only other Maverick scoring in double-figures this season. He had a team-high 18 points in Omaha’s four-point loss to Colorado earlier this month.
3 – One last game without Cam and Zoran
The Cyclones have to get through just one more game with their short roster of only eight guys. Star sophomore center Cameron Lard and senior forward Zoran Talley are expected to return from suspension at the beginning of December and they will be welcome additions to a group that has probably exceeded expectations for Iowa State thus far.
Once those two return, they’ll have one more tuneup opportunity against North Dakota State next week before a date with the Hawkeyes in Iowa City on Dec. 7.