Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#843 Minnesota 130.5 vs.
#844 Rutgers -5.5
Sunday, January 19, 2020 at 1:00pm EST
Written by Adam Rauzino

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#843 University of Minnesota
#844 Rutgers University
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The Rutgers Scarlet Knights will host the Minnesota Golden Gophers in Big Ten action Sunday afternoon from the Rutgers Athletic Center. The Golden Gophers registered a 75-69 home win over Penn State in their latest bout, and the Scarlet Knights earned a 59-50 home win over Indiana on Wednesday. Each team posted a home win in last year’s season series.

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Minnesota Defeats Penn State, Eyes Third Straight Win

The Minnesota Golden Gophers are targeting their third straight win in this one. They have rebounded from a loss to #8 Michigan State with victories against #19 Michigan, followed by a 75-67 home win over Penn State on Wednesday in a tilt that had Minny favored by two points. The Golden Gophers' defense has been sharp.

Watch for Daniel Oturu in this one. The sophomore center is red-hot, sinking at least 22 points in three consecutive games. Oturu has collected 11 double-doubles on the year and is averaging 20.3 PPG and 12.1 RPG. Marcus Carr is also in a groove, accumulating a combined 48 points in his last two games. The sophomore guard scored 27 points in Wednesday’s victory and has increased his season average to 16.5 points on 38% shooting. Gabe Kalscheur is slumping, shooting below 40% in four straight clashes. The sophomore guard is averaging 11.9 PPG on a 38% clip from the field.

The Golden Gophers are ranked 31st in the country in Ken Pomeroy’s college basketball ratings, and they could move into the AP Top 25 if they continue their success. Minnesota is 0-5 on the road and they are averaging 73.7 points, ranking them 125th in DI. They are allowing an average of only 66.8 points, positioning them 122nd overall.

Improved Rutgers Earns Fourth Big Ten Victory

The Rutgers Scarlet Knights are one of the most improved teams in the entire Big Ten. They feature a 4-2 record in Big Ten play and are red-hot, winning seven out of their last eight games overall. Rutgers’ stifling defense was on display in their 59-50 home win over Indiana on Wednesday to cover the four-point spread.

Ron Harper Jr. has only netted a total of 15 points in his last two games. Overall the sophomore guard is having a solid season and is sporting an average of 11.4 points and six rebounds per game. Geo Baker is 0 for 11 from beyond the arc over his last three games. The junior guard has collected 10 or fewer points in each of his last four games and holds an average of 11.1 PPG on 39% shooting. Akwasi Yeboah has tallied a combined 18 boards in his last three games. The senior forward is averaging 9.4 PPG and 4.6 RPG.

The Scarlet Knights are ranked 28th in the country in Ken Pomeroy’s college basketball ratings and feature a 12-0 record on their home floor. Rutgers is scoring an average of 71.4 points, ranking them 184th in DI. They are limiting opponents to 58.8 points, good for 8th in the country.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

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I am siding with Rutgers in this one. Rutgers is playing with a ton of confidence and has won seven out of their last eight games overall. They beat a ranked Seton Hall and Penn State team in that span. The Scarlet Knights are one of the best defensive teams in all of DI and have they allowed 61 or fewer points in three straight games.

Furthermore, Minnesota is a much different team on the road where they stand at 0-5 on the season. They have scored 69 or fewer points in four out of their five road games, and they are going to have trouble solving Rutgers’ stifling defense.

Prediction: Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Full-Game Total Pick

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This matchup has the ingredients for a defensive tilt. Rutgers plays at a slow pace and they are all about defense. They are only averaging 69.5 possessions per game in their last three games. They just limited Indiana to 50 points and I expect another solid defensive performance. The under is a perfect 6-0 in Rutgers’ last six games overall.

In addition, Minnesota is also playing solid defense. They have held Michigan and Penn State to 67 and 69 points respectively in their last two games which is no easy task. The under is 21-8-1 in the Golden Gophers’ last 30 games as an underdog.

Prediction: Under

Full-Game Prop Bet

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The under on the Minnesota team total offered on PointsBet is a strong play. Rutgers has contained almost every single one of their opponents this season. They have allowed 62 or fewer points in seven consecutive games. Lastly, Rutgers is limiting opponents to only 29% shooting from three-point range and this is key as Minnesota does take a fair amount of three’s.

Prediction: Minnesota Team Total Under

Half-Time Total Bet

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I am staying with the under on the first half total. Rutgers is only averaging 26.7 points in the first half in their last three games. Also, the Scarlet Knights’ defense has been outstanding in the opening half where they have allowed an average of only 25 points in that same three-game span.

Prediction: Under
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Written By Adam Rauzino

Adam has been a sports fanatic his entire life, closely following hockey, baseball, basketball and football. Adam enjoys analyzing various stats, as well as studying Sabermetrics and analytics to take his picks to a whole new level. Adam has a passion for writing about various sports as well as personal finance and has brought his talents to us here at Winners and Whiners. He graduated with a diploma in business marketing and business finance.