Michigan vs. Ohio State: Big Ten Conference Basketball From Inside Value City Arena

No. 22 Michigan Wolverines at No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes
Sunday, 1/29/12, 1:00 PM EST, TV:  CBS
Opening Point Spread:  Ohio State -14
Current Betting Line:  Ohio State -14
Opening Total:  127
Current Total:  126.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Ohio State Buckeyes have failed to cover the spread in six straight meetings against the Michigan Wolverines

Michigan will battle for first place in the Big Ten Conference in heading to Columbus to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes inside Value City Arena, as the program looks to snap a five-game losing streak in the series.  It’s important to note that the Wolverines have covered the last six meetings in this series versus the Las Vegas number.  The program has alternated wins and losses over its last five games, while the “under” has cashed in five of six games.  Michigan is 27-9 ATS as an underdog the last two-plus seasons.

The Wolverines have two players that are averaging double figures offensively, with junior guard Tim Hardaway Jr. scoring 15.2 points per game.  Michigan’s 6-2 Big Ten record has the program tied for the conference lead with Ohio State and Michigan State, which coincidently is the team’s two opponents over the next seven days.  Offensively, the team is averaging 68.4 points per game, while allowing 61.0 points a contest.  Wolverines head coach John Beilein has watched the roster shoot 46.4 percent from the floor, which is currently the top single-season percentage for any season during his time on the sidelines.

Ohio State has won three consecutive games and covered all three contests that includes a 78-54 blowout victory over the Penn State Nittany Lions as 21.5-point home favorites.  The Buckeyes were glad that senior guard William Buford showed signs of getting over a shooting slump, pouring in 15 points and grabbing nine rebounds, as he’s the team’s only senior.  “I’ve got great trust in him,” commented Buckeyes head coach Thad Matta.  “A lot of times you go into battles with the guys that have been in them before.”  Ohio State is 7-1 ATS as a home favorite of 12.5 or more points this year.

The Buckeyes are ranked second in both scoring offense and scoring defense in the Big Ten Conference, while leading all teams with an average scoring margin of 22.0 points per game.  Ohio State owns a 90-71 overall advantage in this series, which includes a 51-26 mark in games played in Columbus.  Jared Sullinger is the player to watch inside the paint, coming in with 963 points in about one and a half seasons.  He recorded his ninth double-double of the season against the Nittany Lions and has 27 in his career.

Bettors will likely back the Wolverines due to their 4-0 ATS mark as a road underdog of 13 or more points, while the favorite is 0-5 ATS in this series.

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