Michigan State Spartans (12-6 SU, 9-8 ATS, 7-10 O/U) at Ohio State Buckeyes (10-7 SU, 5-10 ATS, 9-6 O/U)
When and Where: Sunday, Jan. 15, Value City Arena, Columbus, Oh., 1:30pmET
Line: Ohio State -2
Michigan State has opened up with a 4-1 record in the Big Ten. They rebounded from a bad loss at the Palestra against Penn State last week (72-63), to beat No. 24 Minnesota, 65-47 at home. Ohio State is a disappointing 0-4 in the Big Ten after falling at Wisconsin, 89-66 on Thursday. Last season, Michigan State dominated Ohio State, winning all three games, including an 81-54 win in the Big Ten Tournament.
Bridges leads Sparty against Gophers
When Michigan State is on their game, they are playing tough defense and dominating the glass. Against Minnesota on Wednesday, the defense was sensational as they held the Golden Gophers to just 33.3 percent from the field and 3-of-16 (18.8%) from beyond the arc. They also outrebounded the Gophers by 12. The Spartans shot just 42.6 percent from the floor and 5-of-14 from beyond the arc. Miles Bridges led the Spartans with 16 points and six rebounds on 5-of-7 shooting. Joshua Langford added 13 points and went 6-of-9 from the floor. The game was a blowout from the start as Sparty jumped out to a 39-17 lead and never looked back. The Spartans beat Minnesota for the second time this season, having defeated them 75-74 in overtime on Dec. 27, 2016.
Bridges (6-7, 230) leads the Spartans in scoring with 14.5 points per game and 8.0 rebounds on 48.1 percent shooting (37% 3pt). Forward Nick Ward (6-8, 250) adds 13.6 points and 6.7 rebounds on 59.5 percent shooting. MSU averages 72.3 points per game and shoots 47 percent from the floor. They allow 66.7 points per game and 39.1 percent from the floor.
OSU can’t get on track
Thad Matta has coached the likes of D’Angelo Russell, Greg Oden and Aaron Craft. The Buckeyes had an experienced crew coming into the 2016-17, but the results have been extremely disappointing. They have good players but they lack the star power of the past. They weren’t even competitive against Wisconsin on Thursday on the road, falling behind 45-27 at the half. They never recovered as the Badgers held them to just 39.6 percent shooting from the field and 5-of-20 from 3-point range. Wisconsin shot 49.3 percent from the field, including 12-of-22 from three-point range. JaQuan Lyle led the Buckeyes with 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting, while Kam Williams added 12 points.
On the season, the Buckeyes are averaging 73.8 points per game and 46.9 percent from the field. They are allowing 66.9 points per game and 39.5 percent from the field. Forward Jae’Sean Tate leads OSU with 14.2 points per game and adds 6.5 rebounds. Center Trevor Thompson (7-0, 250) adds 10.7 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game.
College Basketball Trends:
Michigan State is:
- 5-1 ATS last 6 overall.
- 9-2 ATS last 11 road games.
- 16-5 ATS last 21 vs. Big Ten.
Ohio State is:
- 1-6 ATS last 7 vs. Big Ten.
- 1-7 ATS last 8 Sunday games.
Michigan State has been very good lately, outside the Penn State game. They might have taken them lightly, but they can’t afford take the hungry Buckeyes lightly. They are 10-3 ATS the last 13 on the road in series and 6-0 ATS last 6 in series.
Pick: Michigan State +2
Tougher call on the total than the side. Michigan State dominated defensively in their last game against Minnesota, but on the road against Penn State last week, they struggled on that end. Ohio State has gone over in five straight games. Their defense in the Big Ten has been horrible as they’ve allowed 75 or more points in all four games. The Spartans are 7-1 Over last 8 Sunday games and 7-3 Over last 10 road games.