Mark Phelps enters his fourth year as the head coach at Drake. Phelps has not beaten Iowa State so far in his career at Drake. The Drake Bulldogs won their opening game of the season on Saturday, topping Upper Iowa 83-58. In last year’s game, Iowa State pounded Drake, 91-43. Scott Christopherson scored 29 and Melvin Ejim added 14.
Last year’s best player, Rayvonte Rice makes his season debut after he was suspended for Upper Iowa game due to a shoplifting arrest. The 6’4 guard averaged 13.8 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per contest. He also averaged over 20 points on a preseason trip to Australia. Rice is only a sophomore and many expect him to carry the Bulldogs this year again. Also returning from suspension is senior guard, Kurt Alexander.
Forward Aaron Hawley was Drake’s leading scorer last game against the Peacocks. Hawley scored 23 points and also added 7 rebounds on Saturday. Four other Drake Bulldogs scored in the double-digits against Upper Iowa. Forward Jordan Clark scored 11, Ben Simmons had 12, guard Karl Madison scored 13, and forward Jeremy Jeffers added 15.
Prediction: Iowa State has more overall talent and more depth than Drake. I expect Royce White to have another huge game down low for the Clones. I predict Melvin Ejim will rebound after his performance against Lehigh and score around 15 points. The Cyclones cruise to their second win of the year tonight in Des Moines. Iowa State 75, Drake 59