College Basketball Picks: Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Ohio State Buckeyes

Minnesota Golden Gophers at No. 18 Ohio State Buckeyes
Wednesday, 2/20/13, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  Big Ten Network
Opening Point Spread:  Ohio State -5
Current Betting Line:  Ohio State -5.5
Opening Total  128.5
Current Total:  125.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Ohio State Buckeyes are 10-9 ATS as favorites this season
The Ohio State Buckeyes are 10-9 ATS as favorites this season

Minnesota has dropped three of its last four games, including a 72-51 setback to the Iowa Hawkeyes as 1.5-point road underdogs Sunday, while going UNDER the total for the fifth consecutive contest.  “We’ve got to look onto the next mission,” commented Golden Gophers point guard Andre Hollins.  The Golden Gophers will enter this Big Ten Conference matchup with a 4-16 record in February the last three years, which is hard to ignore when making your college basketball picks against the spread Wednesday night.

The Golden Gophers are certainly balanced on the offensive end, with Hollins leading the way, averaging 13.7 points per game.  Minnesota may be without the services of forward Rodney Williams, who is listed as questionable with a shoulder injury, which could be a major blow due to ranking second on the team in points, rebounds and blocks.  The program leads the conference in averaging 6.0 blocked shots per game, while enjoying a plus-6.6 rebounding margin in Big Ten play.

Ohio State has dropped three of its last four games as well, including a humiliating 71-49 defeat to the Wisconsin Badgers as four-point road underdogs Sunday, while going OVER the total in a fourth consecutive contest.  “We can’t play like this in February,” stated Buckeyes guard Aaron Craft.  “This is beginning-of-the-year mistakes being made.”  The Buckeyes can certainly bounce back in this spot, considering they’ve gone 25-3 in this series when entering as a ranked team.  Ohio State is 10-9 ATS as a favorite this season, with the UNDER going 10-8 in that situation.

The Buckeyes are led on the offensive end by junior forward Deshaun Thomas, who is leading the conference in averaging 20.1 points per game, while also pacing the squad in grabbing 6.2 rebounds.  Ohio State is 17-0 versus unranked foes this season, while managing just a single win in eight tries versus top-25 opponents.

Sports bettors will likely back the Buckeyes due to the favorite being 11-1 ATS in the last 12 meetings in this series.

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