Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. Iowa St. Cyclones
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights and the Iowa State Cyclones battle it out in “The House That Ruth Built” as they meet in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl in Yankee Stadium. The Scarlet Knights are -2 point favorites over the Cyclones with an over/under point total set at 44.5.
It was a season of streaks for Greg Schiano’s Rutgers Scarlet Knights as they strung together wins and losses all season long. While RU didn’t make a lot of headlines they quietly went about their business finishing the season with eight wins including winning three in row as they were closing out the season until they took a tough loss to UConn. Chas Dood and Gary Nova both saw plenty of action at QB this season and as of the time of writing this Schiano hadn’t named a starter but as is usually the case in QB controversies a lot of it has to do with neither of them standing out with each having just two more touchdowns than interceptions. Jawan Jamison averages just 3.8 yards per carry with seven touchdowns and Jeremy Deering averages 3.6 yards but carried the ball just 47 times. Mohamed Sanu is Rutgers’ best player with 109 catches for 1,144 yards and seven touchdowns, Quron Pratt has 31 catches, and Joe Martinek has 27 catches. Defensively Rutgers has 17 interceptions, 14 fumble recoveries, and 33 sacks while they allow 18.8 points and 314.4 yards per game. Khaseem Greene has 127 tackles and three sacks, Steve Beauharnais has 71 tackles and five sacks, and Duron Harmon has five interceptions. Rutgers had 18 players in all that got to an opposing QB this season.
The Iowa State Cyclones had their share of games against bowl teams this season but unfortunately for them in all but the one win against Oklahoma State Paul Rhoads team ended up on the wrong side of the scoreboard. The Cyclones won just four of their last 10 games including back to back losses to close out the year. Jared Barnett took over at QB for Steele Jantz and he completed just 50.7 percent of his passes with six touchdowns and six interceptions. James White looked good carrying the ball as he averaged 4.7 yards per carry for 701 yards and eight touchdowns. Darius Reynolds had 41 catches and seven touchdowns, Josh Lenz had 35 catches, and Aaron Horne had 33 catches. Defensively Iowa State had 11 interceptions, 13 fumble recoveries, and 24 sacks while they allow 29.6 points and 432.3 yards in the high octane Big 12. Jake Knott had 107 tackles, A.J. Klein had 101 tackles, and Jacques Washington had 83 tackles. While Iowa State did get the signature win against Oklahoma State they didn’t really have any other wins of any significance.
Rutgers is 4-0-1 against the spread in their last five bowl games, 5-1-1 against the spread in their last seven neutral site games, and 1-4-1 against the spread following a game which they didn’t cover. Iowa State is 5-1 against the spread in their last six games overall, 5-0 against the spread against a team with a winning record, and 1-4 against the spread as an underdog of up to three points.
The total is set at 44.5 and for a bowl game and really any game in general that is a low number but it fits here as this one will be more about the defenses and for my pick I will take the under.