Iowa center Luka Garza (55) shoots over Northwestern forward Pete Nance, left, during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game, Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2020, in Iowa City, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
- Iowa is a 4.5-point road favorite over Maryland on Thursday night in an ACC game at the Comcast Center at College Park
- Iowa center Luke Garca led the nation in scoring with a 27.5 point a game average
- A look at the lines and odds for Iowa-Maryland can be found below
Iowa will try to make it back-to-back Big Ten road wins when it plays Maryland at 7 p.m. ET Thursday at the Comcast Center at College Park.
#5 Iowa is coming off a 77-75 victory at then-#14 Rutgers on Saturday that pushed the Hawkeyes’ record to 9-2 overall and 3-1 in the Big Ten. It was the second win for the Hawkeyes after losing two of their previous three games.
Against the spread, Iowa is 7-4 and is favored in this game. Maryland is 6-5 overall, 1-4 in conference play and 5-6 ATS.
Iowa vs Maryland Odds
|Iowa||-215||-4.5 (-114)||Over 155.5 (-105)|
|Maryland||+180||+4.5 (-106)||Under 155.5 (-115)|
Odds taken Jan. 6 from FanDuel.
Iowa Slowed, Not Stopped
Iowa showed against Rutgers that it can win even on a day when its offense is slowed down, though it failed to cover the 3.5-point favorite.
The Hawkeyes’ 77 points were 17 under their average going into the game. However, senior center Luka Garza was able to lead them to victory with 25 points.
“That is absolutely BRILLIANT!”
What a move from @LukaG_55 to tie the game. 😱 pic.twitter.com/BIfR3zwDlz
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) January 2, 2021
Garza tops the nation in scoring with a 27.5 average to go with 9.1 rebounds and 2.0 blocked shots a game. He is moved into second place on Iowa’s all-time scoring list with 1,861 total points, trailing only Roy Marble, who had 2,116 points from 1985-89.
Iowa is still averaging 92.5 points a game, which is third in the country, and first in KenPom.com’s adjusted offense efficiency. Nearly as impressive is the Hawkeyes are averaging just 9.9 turnovers, which is sixth in the nation.
The status of junior wing Connor McCaffrey is uncertain as he twisted his right ankle early in the win over Rutgers and was limited to three minutes. He is averaging 3.0 points and 4.1 assists.
McCaffrey’s injury led to more playing time for freshman forward Keegan Murray and he responded with a career-high 14 points and nine rebounds. Murray is averaging 6.5 points a game.
📽 Reaction | Keegan Murray made big plays everywhere in No. 10 Iowa’s win at No. 14 Rutgers, including the go-ahead free throws with 16.4 seconds left. pic.twitter.com/7nYB88zBxv
— Iowa Hawkeyes | The Gazette (@GazetteOnIowa) January 3, 2021
Senior guard Jordan Bohannon had 13 points on five-of-seven shooting. He also made three 3-pointers, increasing his career total to 310, which is ninth in Big Ten history.
2021 Naismith College Basketball Player of the Year Odds Tracker
Maryland Falters Down Stretch
After taking 10-point lead nearly five minutes into the second half, Maryland fell apart down the strength and lost 63-55 at Indiana on Monday night in its last game. The Terrapins were five-point underdogs.
Maryland’s defense, though, could pose a challenge for Iowa. The Terrapins are allowing 66.6 points a game and holding opponents to a 42.9 field-goal percentage. Yet they have also given up 72.6 points against conference opponents.
Junior guard Aaron Wiggins shined in a losing effort at Indiana with 22 points and 10 rebounds. That continues a fine all-round season in which he is averaging 11.5 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists.
🎯🐢 @Aaron_Wiggins_ with nothing but net on his first 3 of the night for @TerrapinHoops pic.twitter.com/N99fdvt9fL
— FOX College Hoops (@CBBonFOX) January 5, 2021
Indiana did a good job of slowing down junior guard Eric Ayala, Maryland’s leading scorer with a 14.9 average. Ayala managed just nine points, the second time he has been held to single digits this season.
Sophomore forward Donta Scott is averaging 12.9 points and 7.3 rebounds. He pulled down 12 boards at Indiana.
Iowa and Maryland split their two games last season with each winning on its home floor. The Hawkeyes rolled to a 67-49 victory as a two-point underdog and the Terrapins took the rematch 82-72 as a six-point favorites.
Wieskamp led Iowa with 26 points, 11 rebounds and four steals in its win while Garza added 21 points and 13 rebounds. In the second game, Garza scored 21 points and Wieskamp added 17.
While Maryland is coming off a clunker, the Terrapins defense figures to at least challenge Iowa and keep things close in this one.
Pick: Maryland +4.5 (-106)
John Perrotto has been covering and writing about sports for various outlets for over 40 years. His work has appeared in the likes of USA TODAY, ESPN.com, SI.com, Forbes.com, The Associated Press, Baseball Digest, and more. John is based out of Beaver Falls, PA.