Big Ten Conference Basketball: Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Michigan State Spartans

Penn State Nittany Lions at No. 12 Michigan State Spartans
Wednesday, 2/8/12, 6:30 PM EST, TV:  Big Ten Network
Opening Point Spread:  Michigan State -17
Current Betting Line:  Michigan State -17
Opening Total:  124.5
Current Total:  124.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Michigan State Spartans forward Draymond Green is averaging a double-double this season

Penn State has lost seven of eight games and travels to East Lansing looking to snap a four-game losing streak.  The Nittany Lions are 7-29 overall in this series and have won just once in 19 prior meetings in East Lansing.  “If you polled the Big Ten coaches right now, I’m sure just about all of them would vote Penn State as one of the hardest playing teams,” commented Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo.  The team will be looking for its first road win in conference action, coming in with an 0-6 record away from home.  Penn State is 1-7 ATS on the road this season and the “under” is 5-3 in those contests.

The Nittany Lions continue to be led by junior point guard Tim Frazier offensively, averaging 18.3 points and leading the Big Ten in assists.  It’s important to note that he’s never scored inside tonight’s venue, missing all seven shots from the floor in two contests.  Penn State actually won two of three meetings with Michigan State a year ago, including a 61-48 win in the semifinals of the 2011 Big Ten Tournament as 3.5-point underdogs.

Michigan State is fresh off an impressive 64-54 win over in-state rival Michigan as seven-point home favorites, going “under” the total in four of five games.  The Spartans may have a tough time keeping their focus considering that they travel to face the Ohio State Buckeyes on Saturday.  Forward Draymond Green will play an important part in this contest, scoring 14 points and grabbing 16 rebounds versus the Wolverines, as he showed no signs of being hampered by a sprained knee.  Michigan State is 8-3 ATS at home this season and the “over” is 6-5 in those contests.

The Spartans are a dominating 234-29 inside the Breslin Center under Izzo’s direction, including a 119-20 conference record.  Green currently leads the Big Ten in grabbing 10.5 rebounds per game, ranking 13th nationally in that particular category.  Michigan State averages 73.7 points per game on the offensive end, while giving up just 59.1, which comes out to outscoring opponents by an average of 14.6 points a contest.

Bettors will likely back the Nittany Lions due to their 5-3 ATS mark as a road underdog of 12.5 or more points, while the Spartans are 7-12 ATS as a home favorite of more than 12.5 points.

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