Michigan vs. Purdue: Big Ten College Basketball Inside Mackey Arena

No. 22 Michigan Wolverines at Purdue Boilermakers
Tuesday, 1/24/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Purdue -4.5
Current Betting Line:  Purdue -4.5
Opening Total:  129
Current Total:  129
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Purdue Boilermakers are 5-0 after suffering a loss this season

Michigan is one of five teams from the Big Ten Conference that is nationally ranked and will look to bounce back from a disappointing 66-64 loss to the Arkansas Razorbacks as two-point road underdogs on Saturday.  “An inch here or there and it’s a completely different feeling in this locker room,” commented Michigan guard Jordan Morgan.  The Wolverines are certainly going to face a major challenge in playing inside Mackey Arena, losing their last six visits by an average of 15.4 points per game.  Michigan is 26-9 ATS as an underdog the last two-plus seasons.

The Wolverines are one of seven teams nationally to have two wins over top-10 ranked opponents, but they’ve alternated wins and losses over their last four contests.  Michigan needs leading scorer Tim Hardaway Jr. to break out offensively to pull off a slight upset based on the betting odds, coming off a dismal nine-point performance against the Razorbacks.  He has been a completely different player on the road than at home, averaging just 10.5 points and shooting 28.6 percent from the floor.

Purdue has alternated wins and losses over its last six games, as it tries to get over a sluggish 25-point loss to the Michigan State Spartans on the road.  The Boilermakers are going to need some quality wins down the stretch to make it to their sixth-straight NCAA tournament, with many experts currently having them on the bubble.  Senior point guard Lewis Jackson has been dealing with some back issues most of the year, which has caused the offense to sputter at times.  Purdue is 6-3 ATS at home during the 2011-12 campaign.

The Boilermakers are 5-0 this season following a loss and four of those victories have come at home.  Purdue is among the nation’s best in turnover margin, ranking ninth in that particular category.  Getting production out of its bench is going to be key in this contest, with the reserves outscoring their opponent’s bench in 14 of 20 games this year.  The group is averaging 27.3 points and shooting 46.3 percent from the floor in the first seven conference games.  Forward Robbie Hummel will need to get over his most recent performance, failing to make at least one field goal for the first time in 112 college games.

Bettors will likely back the Wolverines due to their 9-2-1 ATS mark as an underdog of 6.5 points or less, while the Boilermakers are 2-8 ATS in Big Ten play.

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